Ultimately, A Course in Miracles points beyond itself, as all “solutions” and “methods” and “paths,” spiritual and otherwise, must.
I say “must . . .”
What I mean is, in this life as “I” have lived and observed it, all solutions, methods and paths have pointed beyond themselves. From that consistency I infer a law, neatly summarized by the story of the monk who confuses the finger for the moon to which the finger points.
Eventually, these various solutions, methods and paths exhaust themselves, like funeral pyres coming to rest in ashes, blowing away in winds I cannot control. And I am left without finger or moon.
Am I therefore bereft? Is suffering mandatory?
Hold onto nothing. Do not bring with you one thought the past has taught, nor one belief you ever learned before from anything. Forget this world, forget this course, and come with wholly empty hands unto your God (W-pI.189.7:3-5).
Listen: even the cross must point beyond itself, for it is only a symbol within the ego’s world, a plaything for those who need to play a while longer. When at last the ego dies, it takes the cross – and crucifixion – with it.
Imagine a world where we do not crucify ourselves or others, and then do what you are uniquely called to do to bring that world forth. Only then will you learn the truth inherent in “there is no world” (W-pI.132.6:2).
If you cannot imagine such a world, or cannot hear the call to participate in it, then give attention – through inquiry – to why you cannot. Find people who will support you in this inquiry by not letting you settle for easy or comfortable answers, and by supporting you in asking subtler and more provocative questions.
We are at peace but believe otherwise – why?
This is the easiest and the hardest point(er). It reminds me of “take up your cross and follow me”. I realized for the first time that starts with “take up” (no longer be crucified to it), which doesn’t have to mean lug it around and still have it be a burden. For that matter, take up your cross and use it as a wall brace or plow yoke or an art piece … or a symbol of forgiveness! Like in AA, it is either a way to use that history of substance abuse as a way to inspire shared community, share non-judgementally and even retell stories humorously, and to help others still in the active self harm way; or it’s a disease that never leaves and the aforementioned way is just a prescription for the fact of fear, instead of descriptions of behavior that naturally come from ease. That’s the hard aspect, that love shows its way on Earth when it’s simply let to, but that way becomes a “how to” to the egoic/mental way that hears it that way, likely (historically) to invert completely all the gracefull, simple, and skillfull-on- Earth messages that have been meant for their times. And that egoic way does what it does, and love reveals the way to reconfigure the warped responses to those messages. Revealed again as the same simple point of admitting enough suffering: enough suffering at this Mind’s reincarnation of “my personal story”, that is the time-based inheritor of that particular form of redemption warped back into need-of-redemption (proof of guilt). “Happier dreaming”, and that it’s God’s will to wake up from the dreaming that way instead of suddenly out of fear, I think are evidence of one will. The split will that is imagined as a separate person, that person is likely NOT going to rush to end itself, and takes on less harmful stories (like judging others was) and spirituality, that continue to uphold separate-selfhood, but less pain/fear/suffering. And that direction is “my” will displaying a dreaming of “less” difference with God – because there is no God that says not to experience it that way! Separate self-hood thinking sudden release should be evidence of God, is just that “proof” of an S&M God that verifies that separate-selfhood! That’s the “hard” truth that’s been “played” with. And then release IS “sudden” when happier dreaming has been recognized to point beyond itself. And somehow when we live in Being that which is pointing beyond itself, we wouldn’t not point out what’s beyond “problems”. And it’s those body-identifcation self-limitations that are presented to us by others AS still our own one idea of limitation (I guess first and foremost that I might be taking “other” too litterally as “my personal” limitation, so thank “you”, my savior). And then we “Imagine a world where we do not crucify ourselves or others”, after living that world and then asking why we can not, until the “why”s are exhausted – as the personal relationship with the one impersonal redemption. I’ll do my unique part by listening to Lenon’s Imagine right now, and continuing to read your writings, and needing do nothing. Thank you Sean, with great affection.
This is just a beautifully profound way to put it:
. . . love shows its way on Earth when it’s simply let to, but that way becomes a “how to” to the egoic/mental way that hears it that way, likely (historically) to invert completely all the gracefull, simple, and skillfull-on- Earth messages that have been meant for their times.
And yes, clearly, the egoic “alternative to love” is also love just exhausting its absence for its own benefit.
Like in the end, no matter how hard you try to not be, you end up happy, joyous and free!
I like “Imagine,” too, and often correlate it to John Denver’s “Rhymes and Reasons” which feels less “deep” but with the same basic idea, which reminds me we are all sort of singing the same song here & learning how to harmonize better and better.
Hope all is well, Mike!
Thank you, I didn’t know that song. And thanks for including your altars in that previous post, lovely to get to partake of them with you. I hadn’t realized I have two table top water fountains that are altars for me. They have rocks and stone turtles and a ceramic gecko and myrtle berries and pine cone and Salvadoran designed cloth, around them. And besides the water itself, lighting as central for all of it. And now your altars and the post about them, are also “around” them. They say hi to you and yours. Thank you for your innocense and trusting and loveliness.