My happiness and my function are one.
This is deeply practical advice. It is so simple and clear that we have to work very hard to obscure its truth. Indeed, there’s really very little thinking involved. When we are happy, we are meeting our function as established by God. When we’re unhappy, we’re not, and so we need to make an adjustment.
Once I accept that it’s God will that I be happy, then A Course in Miracles and the seeming external circumstances to which I apply it just flow. They are no longer problems to be solved or complexities to be unraveled. They are no longer abstract ideas that need to be understood. They are simply the experience of joy to which we are all entitled, and which we can all accept as our own.
There is great logic to the truth of this lesson: God gives only love and happiness and God gave me my function, so my function and happiness/love must be identical. To the extent I am resistant – and I am indeed at times resistant – then these steps make the undoing very clear and direct.
Do I believe that God is not happiness? Not Love? Do I believe that God extends something other than what God is? I have to look closely at these ideas and I have to be very honest with myself. This lesson makes clear that “great honesty” is needed to fully bring it to application (W-pI.66.9:6). That’s because for most of us we do not unequivocally accept God as love. We hedge. God is love but God also judges. God is love but God allows fear in order to keep us in line. These are discouraging thoughts, of course, and many of us project and deny them in order to avoid having to perceive ourselves as believing such unspiritual ideas.
But it’s good to go deep and it’s good to unravel the fear and the anger and the guilt. Realizing that our idea of God is tainted or compromised is not the same as God actually being tainted or compromised. Not at all. It’s merely to recognize the degree to which egoic thoughts impair our perception and block the awareness of what is true. Never underestimate the ego! It is fighting for its life.
The fear of God is very real for most of us – buried deep, obscured by denial and kept at bay by projection – but still ours, and still real. This lesson invites us simply to see that fear. If we really look at it, it dissolves almost of itself. How can God be unkind? Mean-spirited? Judgmental? On some level – deeper even than the ego’s lies – we know this is not true. And so laughter is the appropriate response to the fear of God. It really is. And laughter is one of the hallmarks of undoing. It’s the bell that rings when we are getting clear about who and what we are.
We are moving steadily past our perception of form and the many differences and degrees that characterize form to content. Happiness is consistent and constant. It is fundamentally trustworthy. It naturally extends itself and lights up our brothers and sisters. There is only one way to be truly happy, and that is to give up conflict altogether. Not to understand conflict or solve conflict or study conflict. Nor is to study peace and plan for peace.
It is simply to surrender all conflict. It is actually possible to do this! And the yardstick we use to measure our progress is happiness. Be happy in all things and at all times. Forget your ideas about God. Remember that you want the content, not the form. It’s not the bigger house, the better salary, the new partner. It’s the love. It’s the joy. It’s the peace. We are confused about form and content, just as we are confused about God. But it is so easy to straighten this confusion out. It is time to turn our attention to love and to happiness. There is nothing else for us.