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Good evening. And welcome to everyone who’s joining us on the Internet.
I’m going to ask a question: How many of you use your spirituality—your practice of your religion, your practice of A Course in Miracles—as a defense? How many use it as a means of establishing peace in your life so that there are simply no disturbances?
How many of you think that it is through the power of your mind that you create your world and that whatever problems you have are of your own creation, and therefore you are the one who is responsible for correcting what is going on in your mind in order to have an improved experience?
And again: How many of you think that through that practice, you are supposed to arrive at an experience of Life which is not confronted with disturbances … that a disturbance-free life is proof or evidence of your living your holiness well?
In other words, how many of you use the Course or your spirituality as a “cross” that one might hold up in the face of a vampire to protect oneself from the onslaught of evil?
Now, I’m talking about serious things tonight. I’m wanting everyone to take a look at how they misuse the Truth, how they misuse spiritual teachings to further establish the human condition instead of lifting everyone out of it.
You know, if you think you are the creator of your experience and that you’re responsible for anything in it … Wow! What a mean-spirited, destructive, debilitating attitude! How far removed it is from what Love reveals. How far it is from That which uncovers Redemption. And how easily it is used to remain separate and uninvolved from your brothers and sisters.
After all, if you are creating your problems yourself, and you are the one responsible for un-creating them … then likewise, the problems your brothers and sisters are having were self-created by them and they are the ones who must correct it, thus absolving you of any need for involvement and ensuring that without remorse or guilt, or inner discomfort whatsoever, you can ignore their plight because it’s literally, none of your business. Your problems and the correction of them are your business and theirs are theirs. And, after all, you have arrived at a point where your life is on a pretty even keel as a result of your excellent practice of thought-control, mind-control … practice of spiritual truths.
And you know what?
That is as ignorant as any other part of the dream of human existence. It amounts to arriving at a point where you are a successful orphan—one who has managed to stay independent, to not feel anything in terms of Brotherhood—and in the peace you seem to have created at the hand of your own mind, you no longer need to have to stoop to the level of … uh-h … having to cope with your brother’s stupidity.
Am I being too harsh? No, I’m uncovering something that needs to be clearly seen. You have things going on, on your globe, at this time, which reflect need and call for needs to be met.
Let me ask you something (sigh): At what point are you or any of your brothers so deluded, so demented, so destructively engaged in “creating” your lives, that you are not deserving of the Love of a brother, or your brother is not deserving of your engaging in the two-step to ask “What is the truth here?” about your brother so that his holiness can be revealed to you. So that you can forgive your misperception of him that says he is an entity who, through the use of his mind, has created an experience for himself that is awful … “and it’s not my job to correct it! In fact, he’s the only one who has his hand on the switch. I can’t reach it.”
You know, you are never so demented or so confused or so debased by your false thoughts and fears that you are not worthy of my attention and of the, I will say, energy and time it takes for me to engage with you and assure you, and reassure you as often as is necessary for you to finally feel comfortable enough to abandon your confidence in your negative perspective, your negative perceptions.
I am Awake. Does that mean that I do not need to attend to you? Does it mean that I am free to disregard you totally because it’s your job to undo your ignorance? No. If you’re faced with the call right now to attend to the need with compassion and with a recognition that those who are in great need in your world are deserving of your Vision and your love and your compassion, you will not see the demand as an inconvenience that you must put up with, or a disturbance that you must tolerate until you can get back to your nice “peace and quiet” that you’ve created for yourself at the hand of your own thinking!
Listen, learn, and do1 … is the admonishment.
Listening to the Holy Spirit, engaging in the two-step in the holy instant, learning from the encounter you have there, does not bring you to a clarity of mind that creates for you a life of peace in which you will never find anything disturbing happening and therefore, requiring you to do nothing.
The purpose of listening, of turning to the Holy Spirit, is to have your divinity uncovered to you which uncovers the divinity of your brother and sister to you … not so that you can sit back and revel in the clarity of it all, but so that you might actually change the way in which you behave toward and with your brothers and sisters, so that you can “do” in a new way. So that you can be in a way that no longer calls forth defense from your brother or sister and allows him or her to let down his or her guard because he or she feels the love and the respect, and in the feeling of it, can begin to believe that he or she is deserving and respectable … so that his or her divinity begins to be experienced as a reality by him or by her.
You do not create your world. And the world is not an illusion. And you must get over this idea, else you will not treat It respectfully. You will not be willing to honor It and, in the willingness to honor It, let It reveal to you Itself in all of Its divinity.
All … as I’ve said before … all you can create is a misperception of something actual. All you can do is create or fabricate an adjustment to Reality—an alteration of it in your mind. And so you create adjustments—alterations in your mind—about your brothers and sisters and you create terms for them that classify them, you know—“immigrants” “refugees”—words that have a pejorative connotation.
Well, if the world is an illusion, nothing needs to be done. So forget about “Listen, learn, and do.” And if what everyone is experiencing is a world of their own creating, then they must un-create it and [you must] forget about “Listen, learn, and do.” You can sit back! You need do nothing! That is a favorite misunderstood sentence from A Course in Miracles—You need do nothing.
No. Calls for correction are occurring all the time. Correction of what? Correction of misperceptions and, in the correction of the misperceptions, an uncovering of a world different from that which your adjustment caused it to appear to be to you … uncovering its holiness, uncovering the Kingdom of Heaven and the holy Sons and Daughters of God. That’s your task.
“Oh-h … well, does that mean that I can’t discount the refugees? Does that mean that I must be willing to look at them in my mind’s eye and see a worthy human being just like me?”
Are they, having come from a war-torn country, any different from those who are today homeless because wild-fires burned down their homes, and they are sleeping in gymnasiums or in houses that other people have opened up for them if they don’t have relatives nearby?
Rich or poor, the houses were burned down and there they are, with their life turned upside down, with all of their security wiped away in a day! Is compassion not appropriate because … well, “they created the experience for themselves?”
Do you see? There is no love in that. And if you think that your spirituality brings you to a point where that attitude can be embraced and embodied by you, you are exhibiting a call for correction in your life—a need for your perceptions to change—so that you give up your independence and your isolation and you get involved in the “messiness,” I will say—the extreme demand for involvement—helping in unexpected situations with commitment and perseverance, to see to it that you are communicating to those who are suddenly at a disadvantage that whether they’re rich or poor, they deserve to feel safe. They deserve to feel “joined with,” “in community” with others in the midst of what they are experiencing as great loss and a call for great adjustment.
Listen, learn and do means abandoning your own independence by turning to the Holy Spirit and choosing not to operate independent from your right Mind which reflects the Mind of God, any longer. And in that joining, having the clarity unfold in you regarding the holy brother or sister that is your Savior, if you are willing to become involved in the most practical of ways, in the most grounded of ways that truly convey, not through spiritual wonderful lofty ideas, but perhaps, a hug, a gentle constancy of eye contact … that communicates connection and presence.
But of course, this takes time. In other words, it requires you to abandon whatever you so enjoy doing in your “spiritually-achieved independence and sovereignty.” Do you see what I’m saying?
You know what? You don’t get a spiritual understanding, you don’t study A Course in Miracles or any religion so that you can get a grasp on life as though it were something static to gain possession of, so that you’re never thrown into a position of dealing with the unknown. No.
“Life”—the very word—means Movement … means vitality … means, for lack of better words, disturbance to the status quo, forever requiring you to look, to be conscious, with attentiveness to what you weren’t expecting to see, because Creation is never a repeat or a replay of anything. The very word, “Creation” embodies the Meaning of that which is forever new—forever unexpected. I will say, forever surprising!
But of course, if you think your study of Truth is going to get you to a point where Being is changeless … well, you will find yourself constantly frustrated because the dictum, “Behold I make all things new2 will constantly interfere with the status quo, with the “immovableness of Being” that you think the Presence of God is … because, of course, everything that is constantly revealing something new, called “the Universe” called “Creation” is an illusion, and you’re supposed to become free of that.
You never will.
And you will never become free of having to engage in the holy instant—in the practice of the two-step—in deferring constantly to Something other than your memory and your best judgments, arrived at on your own without a conscious joining with the Source of All that Is and fulfilling your Function, which is to acknowledge the Movement of that Source of All that Is, thus playing your part in Creation called “co-Creation.”
It’s so easy to look at others and judge, and come to the conclusion, for whatever the reason, spiritual or not, that they are unworthy of your attention … that they do not deserve it. And perhaps the most mean-spirited and worst reason that you could have for it, is that “they created it for themselves,” and they are the ones that must uncreate it. It’s not your job. And you don’t want it to be your job because it will interfere with you doing the fun things you want to do in your state of independence, where you’re supposed to be free to enjoy whatever you want to enjoy without distraction or interference, because that is what epitomizes the sublime state of holiness.
Anything which promotes and substantiates independence and is used as justification for not joining is the opposite of love and should be dishonored with vigor. How do you dishonor it with vigor? By engaging with your brother, by engaging with your sister, by letting yourself be disturbed and pulled out of your isolated reverie and looking at what is needed, with the intent to not use your memory or your best judgment, but to let yourself be in the “not knowing” place, where you are open to Revelation. Where you are open to the Vision that the Holy Spirit provides—which is nothing more than your right Mind.
What is happening today should not be happening. And you know what? I’m not speaking about what has happened in the past—what has been done in various countries in the past that has promoted what is happening today. It isn’t that that shouldn’t have happened. Today that’s not the issue. What shouldn’t be happening today is the self-righteous spiritual disregard of need, and the judgment of those in need, and the unwillingness to break the boundaries of the status-quo in the minds of the world to see a new answer that embodies the dignity and the high regard that every single individual involved in this dilemma deserves.
Listen, learn and do.
Part of the “doing” is watching your own thoughts. Be careful not to diminish your brothers and sisters, wherever they might be, or whatever circumstances they find themselves in. You may be able to get very high in your metaphysical thinking, your spiritual thinking, so that you say, “No matter how you look at it, no matter whether you think the benefit of the doubt should be given or not, every single one of those individuals has created their circumstance, and they need to uncreate it. Just as I am the only one who can uncreate my misperceptions, they are the only ones who can correct their misperceptions.”
But I’m telling you something right now: I’m correcting your misperceptions … misperceptions that perhaps you didn’t know you were suffering from, and behavior that is the result of those misperceptions. And you couldn’t possibly undo those misperceptions without the help of One who is not suffering from them.
So you are not able to correct your own misperceptions, because without help you don’t know what those misperceptions are. And Someone has to take the time to share them with you and stay with you … and stay with you … and stay with you … until you see it and get it so that you can release it.
You could say that I am inconvenienced by your ignorance and your commitment to your ignorance. Wow, what an egotistical mean-spirited slant on things.
Just as I am, you are the presence of Love. You are the presence of That which is not only capable, but It is your nature and the very intent of your being for you to express, and let It interfere with your selfish, private, undisturbed activities that you would like to preserve at the expense of not only your brother’s and sister’s, but your discovery of your true Function, and Who and What you really Are.
What you don’t extend to your brother, you don’t get to keep for yourself.
Now I am saying that there is a great need here. And it is not just a temporary circumstance, a world circumstance that everyone will get through and come out on the other side of and be able to resume undisturbed, private activities that are a sign of everyone’s practice of creating a pleasant world.
Right now the world is at a point … mankind, you, everyone is faced with the demand, the obligation—which is not going to pass—to be the presence of love that is willingly distracted from private, selfish endeavors and gratefully engages in, for lack of better words, problem solving, by reaching into the unknown for Answers that have never been had before, that meet the human need by uncovering the divinity of everyone. Love must replace selfishness.
Everyone is confronted with this demand. The whole globe is aware of the dilemma. And you know what? It’s not just the dilemma of those who are departing their homelands, their homes, their belongings, everything that has meant something to them, but those who are subjected to the controlling, demeaning effects of selfish commercialism.
You know what? Every aspect of what you call human existence needs to be transformed into the expression of Love, where no matter how fulfillment is distributed, no matter whether dollars and cents exchange hands, the motive is the extension of and the manifesting of care, of the meeting of the human need—the extension of the evidence of well-being, rather than the getting of the evidence of well-being.
No matter how good your situation is, no matter whether you’re one of the rich or well-to-do who has a home that’s not under threat, or whether you are a so-called poor person—not living in a third-world country, but living in Chicago or Los Angeles or Timbuktu—who is having a difficult time making ends meet, you need to find ways to let every activity express caring, extends caring, because that’s the way blessings occur. That’s what makes the word “Brotherhood” mean something. And because that can only be done by engaging in the holy instant, shutting up self-will and genuinely inquiring, “Father, what is the answer here? Holy Spirit, what is the truth here? What is the truth that I don’t know yet, that answers this problem that I don’t have the answer to, which seems to be overwhelming or impossible to deal with?”
You see? That’s Love. Putting one’s self in the apparently vulnerable situation of not knowing—and not assuming that you do know, and not assuming that you ought to know, and something’s wrong with you because you don’t—and abiding in that “not knowing place,” that pregnant silence with faithful attention, undefended against answers that you don’t have yet, so that having listened, you might learn … and having learned, you might do.
You know, there are all kinds of refugees. And you should not assume that in some ways, you are not a refugee from something. You don’t usually think of yourselves as refugees and those who are currently refugees don’t ordinarily think of themselves as refugees, either. And they know that they’re not whatever that word negatively means.
Everyone needs to join together in that healthy appraisal, not only of yourselves, but of each other, so that the perhaps, inconvenient answers can be embraced and acted upon.
“Oh, gee whiz. You know, I just got my kids raised. My husband or my wife and I have a chance to relax and not be engaged in the rigors of raising a child or raising children, and now you want me to consider taking in a refugee? I don’t need that kind of disturbance. I don’t need that kind of interruption of the fulfillment of my goal of privacy and independent fun.”
Yes, you do. Because if you don’t, part of what you are a refugee from, is a lack of brotherhood, and the loss of your own experience of your humanity. And that’s not healthy, it’s not wise, it’s not good and it’s not worthy of respect.
What is my theme tonight? My theme is: Don’t use A Course in Miracles and what it teaches, or what you think it teaches, don’t let your spirituality and your love of God or your love of Truth become a tool by which you manage to remain aloof, untouched by any demand to be in that uncomfortable place of not knowing, so that you might know something beyond your present experience of knowing, and meet a need that was never there before, at least in your experience.
When Hitler invaded much of Europe, did the people in England create that experience for themselves? And was it up to them to undo it, to create a new experience? Were they victims of their own ignorance? And what about the Jews?
Oh, I know, there are ways to logically convict everyone who was imposed upon by Hitler—to convict them of being responsible for the experience they were having. But if that had been done, correction would not have occurred and freedom from the imposition of that which was unlike God would not have been enjoyed by everyone.
Caring, joining together, recognizing the worth of everyone who was imposed upon, and being willing to stand together with them and for them, that was what was called for, and that was what happened. And everyone was imposed upon. Women had to go to work in factories—something relatively unheard of before—taken out of their homes and their roles of motherhood, to run lathes and equipment and manufacture things. Inconvenience occurred. Thank God that it was not ignored! Thank God that the inconvenience was not overlooked or refused attention!
You are the presence of Love. And you are That which has the capacity to engage in the two-step, in the holy instant and ask to know the truth that goes beyond what you presently know, that answers needs that most everyone was ignorant of the existence of. And again the fundamental problem that most everyone is unconscious of is: engaging in activities of all sorts for the purpose of getting instead of for the purpose of giving, where giving arises out of caring, out of feeling brotherhood.
You know what? Your brother is worth every ounce of energy you put forth to see his holiness and to confirm it to him over and over and over again in as many ways as it takes in order for him to overcome his fear and let it go.
It’s the way you come into a full experience of the holy One that you Are.
I love you all enough to make all of this very clear to you, to take the time to give the attention, to put forth the energy, instead of rollicking around in the Kingdom of Heaven and strumming my harp on a pink cloud. Love is about Brotherhood. A Course in Miracles indicates that the need is to be able to look into your brother’s eyes and remember God because in that is not only the experience of your brother’s holiness but the experience of yours. And you have nothing better to do than that.
I look forward to being with you next time.
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