Our reading begins with Chapter 5, Healing and Wholeness and the idea that “To heal or to make joyous is therefore the same as to integrate and to make one.” The idea that we are not separate, and that recognizing that is a step towards realizing wholeness. We like that. There is something about it that feels good: to recognize that each of us focusing on our own stuff and choosing joy is all we really needed to worry about.
We spend almost the entire evening discussing “The Invitation to the Holy Spirit:”
This excites me. It is why I started our little group, so that the ideas found in the Course could become stronger in me. Somehow in discussing this stuff, I find myself better able to take it with me out into the world. I am more rooted in God. I am less thrown by life. So I love seeing it in black and white.
There is a new person in our midst and he brings our attention to the urtext version of the Course and that fact that there are different versions of A Course in Miracles . This is all something I was aware of, but have never put energy into. Frank, our new person, seems to have an affinity for the urtext, which according to Kenneth Wapnick contained personal material for the scribe. Helen Schucman was supposedly instructed by Jesus regarding what should or shouldn’t go into the published version. Since I’ve never been particularly interested in the messy human conflict parts, I’ve never paid attention to anything other than the version endorsed by Helen Schucman and Ken Wapnick. Frank describes the urtext as “earthier” and brings up Robert Perry, the founding member of A Circle of Atonement. He seems well versed on the Course and promises to bring some articles by Perry next week.
All of this makes our entire group curious about the urtext, particularly in light of the fact that much of its content was omitted from the book we read from each week. And let’s face it, the ego loves a good brawl, so there is something comforting about checking out how human even the founders of these various groups are. The ego loves comparison and noticing how other people are no better than it is.
It seems ironic to me that Ken Wapnick appeared to be intent on controlling the information, especially in light of the chapter we were studying whose central tenet was ideas are strengthen by sharing; healing is achieved by making whole.
If you share an idea, however, you do not lessen it. All of it is still yours although all of it has been given away. Further, if the one to whom you give it accepts it as his, he reinforces it in your mind and thus increases it. If you can accept the concept that the world is one of ideas, the whole belief in the false association the ego makes between giving and losing is gone.
I love this. Like love, ideas are increased by sharing. Not in the sense of you should believe as I do because I’m right and you’re wrong, but as in “what do you think about this?” A sort of mutual exploration. Sharing not imposing.
But you can’t be joyous if you’re busy being in conflict (an obvious ego strategy).
Perhaps the challenge is in letting go of my ideas of what I think things are for. The ego so loves to be right.
This discussion leads to duality and politics; after all the Democratic debates were being broadcast during the time of our meeting, so naturally we can’t help but notice the differences between perspectives. Politics is one of those buttons that make it difficult to feel oneness. Someone suggests that the distasteful things one wants to deny in oneself are the things that self projects “out there” and condemns.
I suggest that within so-called “bad,” goodness is there. Even in duality, wholeness lives. That some of the times we thought were the worst moments of our lives turn out to be the greatest learning experiences, the very thing we needed to make us into who we need to become. It’s not good or bad, it just is. It’s what we decided to do with it that matters.
Are we choosing love? What are we teaching? Is this who I want to be in the world?
How do we love people whose perspective is so obviously wrong?
It’s strenuous to look out at the world and see so many things that need “fixing” and not feel overwhelmed. But we can only be where we are. Do the thing that is in front of us to do. Choose love. And when we catch ourselves being someone we don’t want to be, choose again.
For me, personally, it helps to remember that it’s not my job to figure out where anyone else should be on the path. It is after all, “a required course.” I don’t need to worry about where other people are. My own function is to share ideas.
2To be wholehearted you must be happy. If fear and love cannot coexist, and if it is impossible to be wholly fearful and remain alive, the only possible whole state is that of love. There is no difference between love and joy. Therefore, the only possible whole state is the wholly joyous. To heal or to make joyous is therefore the same as to integrate and to make one. That is why it makes no difference to what part or by what part of the Sonship the healing is offered. Every part benefits, and benefits equally.
I don’t need to worry about what anyone else is up to; I only need to worry about myself and do what is in front of me to do. It doesn’t mean we don’t step in and stop abuse when we see it; but my function in those situations is to demonstrate love, not anger or conflict. Not attack but compassion.
It’s the hundredth monkey theory; once critical mass is reached, it shifts the consciousness. In the cases of the monkeys, some hungry critters figured out that their sweet potatoes tasted better when they were washed free of sand and so they showed their friends the better way of doing things. Once enough of them had learned it, monkeys all over the planet suddenly knew the trick and subsequent generations were born knowing it. (Like today’s kids and technology.)
So our duty becomes to share the ideas that excite us. When enough of us learn this stuff, the consciousness of the whole planet will shift.
“To heal or to make joyous is therefore the same as to integrate and to make one. That is why it makes no difference to what part or by what part of the Sonship the healing is offered. Every part benefits, and benefits equally.”
I can trust God to handle the details. All I have to do is my part. (“God will do His part, if you will do yours.”)
And my part is whatever is in front of me to do. Simple (but perhaps not always easy).
Namaste, my friends, Namaste.