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Archive for the ‘A Course in Miracles’ Category

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It was a bright and sunny morning when I walked downstairs and saw this, not one but four 16 oz. glasses, all of which had held milk on the kitchen countertop. My son had consumed them all that morning. Never underestimate the ways in which an awakening can come.

Some background, my son is a 19 yo differently-abled person. A healthy impulse you may have to inhibit or choose what is most personally beneficial, my son does not always have ready access to this.

But back to the glasses. This is important because it’s 20 years of exposure to “A Course in Miracles” and never quite grasping the material fully. So I decided to pick up the workbook lessons from the VERY beginning.

When I got to Lesson 7: I see only the past  ___________. This is when I was graced with a direct experience of the lesson.

I walked downstairs to the morning dishes and I saw four of those 16oz. glasses, with pools of milk drying at their bottoms. I did not see four glasses of milk as if I had never seen them before. Instead, I felt: “Oh no, not again. I can’t take this anymore. When will it stop?” Followed by “I’m so burnt out”.  Every single one of those statements were rooted in the past! And burnout cannot exist without a past, a story, a history, a chain of pain!!

I had a lot of opinions about the empty milk glasses discovery that morning. But just then I said: “I see only the past in this glass.” And all the inner commentary stopped to give way to a broader wisdom.

Seeing the past in this glass was a gateway to seeing just how often thoughts limit me (and even those I love), thoughts imbued with only the meaning I give them. Everything I saw in the glass was the past – the sense of being tired, burnt out. These are constructs of the past that have to be fed regularly to keep the untruth of them going. But if all we have is right here and now, and I’m not fully here, then I’m locked in the past.

Lately, I spend my days checking the credentials of every thought that wants to get a foot in the door, aka scare me, or cause suffering – as soon as I hear their inner commentary – I affirm the truth: I have no neutral thoughts. None of us do actually.

Would you like to know what’s well beyond self-limiting “not neutral thoughts”? I sure did. Even though the Course compels us not to fill the void, I feel a sense of what has to be beyond the limitation, the human propensity to assign meaning to everything. It has to be that all knowing, all encompassing field of infinite potentialities. This is God, Source, Spirit, All That Is.

Still learning and sprouting my wings, but will say “I have no neutral thoughts” is a very powerful exercise to practice during the day. And if you would like to do the daily lessons, many websites and apps now support this.

Be well and at peace my friends.

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I promise not to rub salt into raw wounds.  I know many of us out there are shocked and grieving at the death of Robin Williams.  There was a point, I could not look at or hear anything about this without crying.  So this morning I just happen to stumble on Marianne Williamson’s post on Facebook.  I see the title, and I think – no way, I am not reading this.  Then I remember, this is Marianne Williamson!  She’s not going to take us through some heart breaking journey of his life, no she will elevate us all from our sorrow.

I need read nothing more on the subject, she says it all:

“ON THE PASSING OF ROBIN WILLIAMS…

One theory of death is that, upon our passing, we experience our lives again backwards. Whatever I gave or did not give to others, I will experience what they experienced — times ten. That would mean that for every laugh — either a small chuckle or outright guffaw –every smile that Robin Williams caused to occur in others, he is now experiencing tenfold. That would amount to bliss unending. May it be so.

Juxtaposed with both irony and tragedy, of course, is the unspeakable suffering that would have led to his death, and the grief today of those who knew him best and loved him most. Let’s hold both truths in our hearts — a deep appreciation that a comic genius walked among us and shared his gifts with us, thanks for the opportunity we had and still have to enjoy his talent, and prayers of peace for his soul and comfort for his family.

Dear God,
May Robin Williams be blessed.
May he find in heaven the peace he could not find on earth.
May he know now the joy that he gave to all of us.
Give comfort to his family,
and rest unto his soul.
Amen”

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This week’s inquiry … questions designed to be experienced rather than thought through …

What would innocence bring to this thought, this person, this situation?

Innocence waits for nothing,  It has no opinion of your story, holds no grudges, makes no conclusion, knows nothing of your suffering.  Innocence doesn’t age or remember.  It holds no deep pockets filled with unending rules.  It carries only one inherent knowing: it knows the wholeness.  ~Bethie

When you know every thought of attack towards anyone is a sword that is dropping on your own head, and when you know that your willingness to see the innocence in another person, then therein lies your capacity to experience your own innocence. ~Marianne Williamson

I could spend my day with my history and my pain and my failures.  I could also live the day as a blessing waiting to be unwrapped by my eyes and my grateful heart.  Given the choice to drown in a sea of pain or float effortlessly on a sea of bliss — hmmm, which shall I choose?  It’s a no brainer, right?  But ah, that history can be seductive!  And yet, each day, patiently and silently God draws aside the curtain.  I awake, I peek around that curtain with all the innocence and curiosity of a newborn, because that’s what the newness of this day and this opportunity really represents.  ~Bethie

may the tide
that is entering even now
the lip of our understanding
carry you out
beyond the face of fear
may you kiss
the wind then turn from it
certain that it will
love your back     may you
open your eyes to water
water waving forever
and may you in your innocence
sail through this to that

~Lucille Clifton (at St. Mary’s)  Blessing the Boats

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If you haven’t been able to check in on this inaugural free global online event at Hay House, there’s still time, it lasts through June 10th.  The day’s speakers will be available for just under 24 hours.  This is a phenomenal opportunity, but don’t fret if you can’t listen in, at least for today, the Bethie fairy has transcribed some more highlights for you.

Marianne Williamson speaks on what A Course in Miracles has taught her:

“…the door to peace lay in my forgiveness and love and reaching out in compassion to the person in front of me.  This is not about belief, but experience and I would only experience the peace of God to the extent to which I sought to be an element of peace in the lives of others.  When you know every thought of attack towards anyone is a sword that is dropping on your own head, and when you know that your willingness to see the innocence in another person, then therein lies your capacity to experience your own innocence.”

Jack Canfield was also a speaker, and for all of you writers, I heard him recount that his “Chicken Soup for the Soul” was rejected 143 times!  The whole series has been read now by more than a half a billion people!

Dr. Robert Holden

“Dear God, help me see the truth about myself, no matter how beautiful it is.”   (Love!)

Alan Cohen

“De-pression means there is something pressing in on you.  The best cure I know for de-pression is EX-pression.  You cannot be depressing and expressing at the same time.  If you can take that energy that is pressing in on you and gracefully re-direct it to bring it forth and press it out, then you are taking the same power that was working against you and you are making it your friend; it becomes your ally.”

Gay Hendricks

“Anytime we say things to ourselves or to others, that we don’t have time for that, we are making ourselves a victim of time   The big discovery I made is that I am the source of time and I can make up as much as I want to do the things i want to do.  The reason that works that way is because I quit thinking of myself as the victim of time.  I realized suddenly if I wasn’t speaking as the victim of time, wait a minute! … the other possibility was that maybe I was connected to the source of time!  I realized if I just completely let go and just owned my connection with the source of time, I could make up as much as I wanted to do whatever I wanted to do with it.”  (Wow, what a brilliant concept and so simple.  No maybes about it, if we are connected to Source, then we are connected to it’s unlimited supply!  Read below for a really nice dovetail on this point.)

James F. Twyman

“For most Law of Attraction techniques the foundation is the statement – I want, as opposed to the statement – I Am.  We know that I Am is the name of God, this is the presence of the Divine.  I Am that.  It’s not something that I want.  It’s not something that I hope to have someday.  I already Am because I Am claiming the authority and the divinity of my Creator which is, of course, All things.  When you look at the statement I want, obviously there is something behind that, the sponsoring thought, which is – I don’t have it already.  It’s not something I have that’s in my energy field.  But the statement – I Am, what it does is, it creates an energy field, it creates a magnetic force that is a thousand times more powerful.”

James Twyman, as he continues to comment on the idea of oneness, I Am-ness:

“How do we allow a concept to become a real force in our lives?  That’s such a good question and there’s no real easy answer because it’s not something that we can do, but it is something that we can undo.  Maybe that’s the best way to say it.  Undo this delusion that we have created, that we are separate, vulnerable, alone, that we are here to fight and survive that our physical existence is who we really are, to undo that belief.  …I realize that every moment is an opportunity, right in front of me, to see the truth, to experience oneness or to see the Beloved as I call it.”

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We can let our lives be directed
by the same force that makes
flowers grow.  {…}

To trust in the force
that moves the universe
is faith.

Faith isn’t blind it’s visionary.
Faith is believing that the universe
is on our side, and that the universe
knows what it’s doing.

Faith is a psychological awareness
of an unfolding force for good,
constantly at work in all dimensions.

Our attempts to direct this force only
interferes with it.
Our willingness to relax into it allows
it to work on our behalf.

Marianne Williamson
A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of A Course in Miracles

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Love is a commonly used word, so frequently do we hear it that it’s become both under valued and over valued.  Over valued in it’s fickleness and under valued for the unexamined depth of what it really means.  I’ve sought to discover its true meaning.  It’s been a life long question and the answers change and morph as I do.  At times I’ve found love co-mingling with joy and truth.  A joy that is independent of facts or conditions and truths that remain when all else falls away.

I searched the archives of this blog and it’s over 600 posts many of which are quoting spiritual authors and poets.  Here’s a short collection of what some of them have to say on the subject of love, joy and truth.  Somewhere in there, I’ll slip in my own words.

This isn’t one of those blog posts you’ll want to hurry through and then go about flinging yourself into the day.  No, this is one you’ll want to linger with awhile and let the words melt like warm butter penetrating through the layers of being, softening as it moves deeper within, finally landing in that space that is beyond words.

* * * * *

The blue sky opens out farther and farther,
the daily sense of failure goes away,
the damage I have done to myself fades,
a million suns come forward with light,
when I sit firmly in that world.

I hear bells ringing that no one has shaken;
inside “love” there is more joy than we know of;
rain pours down, although the sky is clear of clouds;
there are whole rivers of light.

~Kabir~

* * * * *

There will come a time when images have all gone by and you will see you know not what you are.  It is to this unsealed and open mind that truth returns, unhindered and unbound.  Where concepts of the self have been laid by is truth revealed exactly as it is….The truth in you remains as radiant as a star, as pure as light, as innocent as love itself.  ~ A Course in Miracles

* * * * *

“Abandonment,”
we call it. As in: wild, or perfect.
We abandon ourselves
to love.

~Kate Knapp Johnson~

* * * * *

This Union you want with the earth and sky
This Union we all need with love

Stay here quivering like a drop of mercury

(combined words of Rumi & Hafiz)

* * * * *

The real presence slips past our demand for spectacle. it slips past our despair. Not just like a child – sometimes it is a child. She walks down the blistered steps to where you kneel and says the simplest things. She is entertained by butterflies. She has opinions about unicorns. She does not seem to care that you are ruined and lost. She does not even seem to notice. Find an earthworm in the neglected loam and she will make you feel for a moment that your life has not been wasted. Name a flower and she will make you feel that you have begun to learn to speak. ~Tim Farrington

* * * * *

I am the one whose love
overcomes you, already with you
when you think to call my name….

~Jane Kenyon~

* * * * *

…you must be willing to set fear aside and trust your knowing self,
the truth which lies deep within, that tells you what to do, from a
place of truth and deep connection with all that is. This truth is
beyond fear.

Quado through Carrie Hart

* * * * *

Never mind pleasure.  Search out joy.  Pleasure is
its shadow.  But joy is real, a secret splendor
running through all creation.

Like gold, it doesn’t lie about the streets waiting
to be picked up.  It has to be dug for, with diligence
and passion.  It’s in people, to be found through
the practice of love.  It’s in work, in the rigorous
exercise of powers of mind or body or spirit.  It’s a
gift the created world is perpetually offering; the
price of it is untiring attention to the present
moment.  …

Hunt it down, pursue it, track it to its lair where
it dwells.  Not in pleasures and pastimes, distractions,
piled-up satisfactions, and busyness.  It dwells in truth,
and nowhere else.

That’s why it matters.  It will show you moment by
moment where truth is for you.  And when you know that,
cleave to it, turn not aside, be given up to that.  That,
if you will will, is a way of life worth living.

~Fae Malania~

* * * * *

If you deny what is your nature
you become deeply attached to that denial.
When you accept what is there, in its truth,
then you are released.
One does not release through rejection.
One releases through love.

Emmanuel’s Book I: A manual for living comfortably in the cosmos

* * * * *

Your choice is between illusion and truth.
There is no particular formula for choosing.
There is only your intent.  Will that be enough?
It will be enough to start you on your way.

Keep asking yourselves, “Am I here now?”
Just that question
will make enormous changes in your lives.
If you ask it experientially
rather than philosophically,
you will find that it becomes a mantra
that will bring you back,
breath by breath, to this time, to this place,
for in truth there is no other.

As you set yourself free from your histories,
you will wear your costumes more lightly;
you will smile much more than usual,
and you will release your hearts
to the point where you begin to trust them.
You will, in short,
let yourselves out of prison, bar by bar.

Fear is a habit.
As you recognize it,
you will be able to loosen the viselike grip –
not that fear has upon you –
but that you have upon fear.

Fear will go away
once you give it permission
to leave.

Emmanuel Book III: What Is an Angel Doing Here?

* * * * *

I want to linger inside the silence
void of sound and distraction

long enough to see for myself that love’s only obstacle
fear, really is just a paper dragon

I want to let every barrier to love fall away

I want to liberate what sleeps within me

and awake resplendent in all that remains:
your pure and perfect love

~Bethie~

* * * * *

“In this,” she says (this vision or, as she always calls it, shewing)–“In this He shewed me a little thing, the quantity of a hazelnut, lying in the palm of my hand, and to my understanding it was as round as any ball. I looked thereupon and thought: ‘What may this be?’ And I was answered in a general way, thus: ‘It is all that is made.’ I marvelled how it could last, for methought it might fall suddenly to naught for littleness. And I was answered in my understanding: ‘It lasts and ever shall last because God loves it, and so hath all-thing its being through the love of God.”  -Fae Malania, The Quantity of a Hazelnut

* * * * *

And now finally and ultimately we come to the end of describing something that really is beyond description.  Though it can be experienced, it is formless and cannot be held nor heard nor seen.  With a twist of paradox, I leave you with this from Suzanne Vega:

I won’t use words again …

They’re just the crust of the meaning
With realms underneath
Never touched
Never stirred
Never even moved through

If language were liquid
It would be rushing in
Instead here we are
In a silence more eloquent
Than any word could ever be

* * * * *

Image props in order posted:

1. artstyleonline.com
2. freefoto.com
3. worldphotographicarts.com
4. digitalcribs.net
5. flickr.com
6. kids-fun-and-games.com

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Apparently all that deep inner work happened rather quickly.  It is within hours of my last blog post, Feel the Fear, that I updated a group of Internet gal pals on my progress.  I’ll quote that directly below and then add to it.

“Dawn came to Bethie today.  First it started with it’s ok to feel the fear.  Or insert whatever emotion in that.  Next it was waves of nausea.  I pushed against it, until dawn came to Bethie and I said it’s ok to throw up and every time a wave came I rode the wave and just kept saying it’s ok to throw up.  Now the next dawn that came to me: it’s ok to have nightmares.  It never was ok to have them.  Never have I embraced them.  Tonight when I lay my head down on that pillow, I’ll say it again — it’s ok to have nightmares.  That’s it, see non-physical is popping the cork even now, I feel it in my goosebumps.  They are jumping up and down yelling yippee, she gets it, she gets it.  SHE GETS IT.  Embrace it all, love it all, don’t push, hide, stuff any of it.  Let it be in the wide open spaces, just let it be.  She gets it!! Hallelujah!”

Oh yes, did I mention I get nightmares?  No, probably not.  I was hiding them.  Nope, no more.  I’d even go so far as to say I get to have nightmares now.  No more pushing anything away.  In the nightmares I replay allowing others to usurp my personal authority.  It’s something I unwittingly gave others permission to do in “real” life, too.

Do you remember that game we used to play as kids — Duck, Duck, Duck, Goose.  Well, it’s as if I’ve been playing a version of it — Wanted, Wanted, Wanted, Unwanted …. woops, unwanted get up and run, flee from it!  Nothing, including allowing others to usurp my personal authority can be healed as long as I’m fleeing from it.

Well guess what happens when you don’t get up and flee from it, you find out its not the big scary monster in the closet you thought it was after all.  There might even be a treasure or two tucked in the hairy hand of the once scary monster — learning that fleeing from anything is the very same thing as usurping my OWN personal authority.

One little phrase: It’s OK to feel _______, it’s OK to have _______, it’s OK to say no to________, it’s OK to cry.  It’s OK, it’s OK, all of it was always OK.  I was just dreaming a dream, that it wasn’t OK.  That darkened tunnel I just walked through was surrounded in the Light the whole time.

I remember this is exactly what I wrote about weeks ago.  I met a British gal named Lori at a conference.  When she spoke of the possibility of cancer and the accompanying fear she felt, she said to herself — clearly, I want to have this experience.

Well, clearly I had to come to this conclusion on my own and with my own experience and language for it.  Now it’s like writing myself a free and clear permission slip to have it all.  It’s how I’ll step out into the world now, sampling the full smorgasbord of life.  My channels wide open and set to receive.  It’s all good, it’s all God.  I am God in expression.  I am pure love.  I see me!  I do, I really do.  And I do see you, too.  Namaste, Jaibhagwan and Aloha.

I leave you with a short quote from A Course in Miracles and one more comment after that:

“Look not upon the little wall of shadows.  The sun has risen over it.  How can a shadow keep you from the sun?  No more can you be kept by shadows from the light in which illusions end.  Every miracle is but the end of an illusion.  Such was the journey, such its ending.  And in the goal of truth which you accepted must all illusions end.

There is a hush in Heaven, a happy expectancy, a little pause of gladness in acknowledgment of the journey’s end.”

And following the hush in non-physical, comes a round of applause, the cork popping and the champagne flowing, glasses clinking in toasts and the happy dance that looks like the minuet, or the Charleston, or the Watusi, or the Bump — just depends what century or decade you last visited.  I kind of like the Bump myself.  Happy days, happy trails, and a happy, happy journey to us all.

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