Way of Transformation: Lesson Six - Question One
How is vulnerability the sure path to invulnerability?
Indeed, beloved brother, you will well hear the world tell you that the path to invulnerability is concealment, is self-protection, is creating privacy from your brothers and sisters, to find a way to create a dark and quiet place within your mind to which you can retreat and find the illusion of safety. Some would go so far as to believe that it is in the requirement of finding invulnerability for the body, by walling it up and not venturing out into the world. Many have gone to monasteries and temples for thousands and thousands of years, thinking they are seeking God, when, in fact, it is fear that is driving them to go and hide. Not all, some.
And yet, I say unto you, beloved friend, invulnerability can never rest on the illusion that separation is possible, but rather, on allowing the Truth of this one idea to enter your mind: All minds are joined. Period. There is no privacy. And then, to realize this: The only way to invulnerability is to dissolve fear. I’ve share with you that mastery is a state of fear-less-ness in which nothing of the phenomenal realm compels you in one direction or another. You merely wait and let the Holy Spirit decide for you.
The way to dissolve fear is to make yourself as transparent as possible to the world, to your brothers and sisters. And how do you do that? Well, you could stand upon a street corner and remove all of your clothing. That would not do it, for you are not the body.
Beloved friend, vulnerability is simply that process of allowing intimacy. And intimacy means “into me see.”
Here I am. \ I just had a fearful thought come up. \ I’m trembling in my boots as I ask for this raise. \ Sometimes I don’t think I’m ever going to get it right.
…whatever may be arising in the field of your awareness.
Don’t wait to find someone to give you permission, but realize that everyone is really, ultimately, doing the same thing as you are–stumbling their way along to the moment in which they will realize they’ve suffered enough and they want only God. It’s just that you happened to be there a little ahead of them.
Therefore, use each moment to decide to be vulnerable to your brother or sister.
God, I’m really frightened of you right now! \ Do you know that I’ve got this distaste in my being and I’m watching my mind say you’re the cause of it? Silly me. \ Sometimes I’m so fearful that I’ll never be enough.
…Whatever it is. Just decide to be vulnerable. And you will begin to notice that as you choose to become transparent to yourself and to others, that something rather odd is happening. The tightness in your belly, the constriction in your chest, the tightness in your jaw, the attack thoughts, the judgments, the dark old wounds that you just can’t seem to release, seem to melt away almost without you noticing them. And why? Because it is fear that has been holding them in place.
And the practice of vulnerability…you can make it a game. You can have a great deal of fun with it.
Humph! I just allowed the gas to pass through the anus. Oh, well!
Begin to make a joke of your own existence. Notice the great humor of it all and be real about it.
As you come to recognize that everything arising within you is a perfectly neutral event, and as you’re willing to share it with yourself, as you’re willing to just open up and say,
Hey, here I am. Look into me and see. If you want to hate me, hate me. If you want to judge me, judge me. If you want to love me, love me.
you will discover that the barrier of fear, which has been as an iron bar, so to speak, is melting in the sun of your Love.
And therefore, vulnerability brings you through the illusion of fear to deep self-love, and then to love of all of Creation. And you will realize that in Love, you are perfectly safe. You are so invulnerable to the slings and arrows of this illusory world, that you simply look upon it with compassion, with Love, and with patience. And if a weed shows up, you merely move it aside, because what you want to delight in is seeing the Christ in another.
If you fear vulnerability, you merely create the impossibility of ever tasting the peace of knowing that you are invulnerable to this world. Begin, then, to practice vulnerability. Open wide and reveal yourself to your world, to yourself. And if you find fear arising, at least find what you call a friend and ask,
Would you do something crazy?
And they’ll say, “What?”
Would you let me become as vulnerable as possible? It scares me to death, but I want to know who I am.
They’ll be, you see, very happy, because that means they don’t have to do anything. They don’t have to fix you. They don’t have to give you advice. They don’t have to do anything except witness you. And in that witnessing, they provide for you the space to choose your healing by becoming perfectly vulnerable.
Practice well, beloved brother. It is a very important question that you’ve asked. And you’ve asked it because you know the weight of the fear of vulnerability is growing too much to sustain. Practice well. Indeed, beloved friend, go to that one that you would know as Reverend Kay, and suggest this practice be distributed amongst those who come to practice the Course in Miracles with her. Let it become an experiment, so that a group of twenty people, or so, come together regularly to simply witness their brother or their sister practicing vulnerability. That’s all they have to do. And then witness the miracles of healing, of bonding, of Love, that ensue.
Take this to her, and therefore, to them. And practice well as part of that group. That should be a sufficient answer for now.