In a sense, to come to stillness is to see clearly that choice is the last illusion. There is nothing to choose between; there is only this: this this.
The many choices that appear to us are always various forms of the one choice, which is the choice to remember God or not remember God in everything we see.
But it’s a trick. Because even this one choice is not actually a choice, because we are never actually separate from God. It is like breathing; we can give attention to breathing or not, but it still sustains us. It is still how we live. We don’t have to remember God to be one with God, any more than we have to remember to breathe in order to draw breath.
There is nothing to choose because there is nothing to choose between. There is no this or that. There is only this: this this. Beyond all appearance there is only one life. To know this is to know that we are already home, and that our long journey in search of home was merely a dream.
You are not a stranger in the house of God . . . Illusions have no place where love abides, protecting you from everything that is not true (T-23.I.10:4, 6).
But this will not be our truth until we stop insisting on certain outcomes in the world. This person instead of that one. This path rather than that. Sun instead of rain.
The stillness to which we are called is deep. It is beyond what is personal and cultural. It is beyond needs and wants. It transcends the ages.
This was not clear to me until I let go of the one who was given to me as a soulmate. The one appeared and I let the one go. I let go of the one who was all that remained after the bleak nihilism of the void, the years and years of study, the endless succession of demons and ghosts advertising fear. I let go and . . .
. . . realized gently that there was nothing to let go of and nobody to do the letting go. In a way, it was like my soulmate took everything and disappeared, leaving me with nothing but God. How generous!
This is a precious gift, far beyond anything the world or a body can offer. We lose nothing and are given everything.
We can read and read and read about it but we won’t know this peace and joy until we actually let go of all that stands before it. Until we actually let go of every idol and symbol the world offers, then the peace of God will always be just another projection, another thing we have or don’t have.
So the suggestion is, stop projecting and actually do the thing you are afraid to do that you know will restore God to your memory. You know what it is; do it.
The form this takes will necessarily change from person to person. But in your heart – in the heart within your heart – you know the truth of your calling. You know the One who is calling. You know what to do to remember God and reflect only Heaven in this vale of tears and duress.
We are here to remind one another to do this, and to support one another as we do it, together remembering the love beyond all idols and symbols, including our soul mate, including A Course in Miracles, including Jesus, including even God.
Together, we are the stillness in which it is so.
Such a beautifully written reminder, Sean. There’s a lot of peace to be had in knowing LOVE is our destination and it was only a ghost train that left the station. The real one’s parked safe and sound back home. All aboard. Thank you!
Thank you Paul! I love the train analogy . . . even ghost trains (from a distance maybe) 🙂 . Thanks for reading and sharing.
I am grateful that the Holy Spirit is gentle, and we are all being “gentle planned by one whose only purpose is our good.” When I am anxious about life and this path, I am grateful that others are on it, doing what I am – working on removing the blocks to the awareness of God’s presence. It is a nice reminder that I don’t have to be too serious about it – that we all will wake up to Truth and realize we never left Home. Thank you for always bringing more light to all of us, Sean.
You’re welcome, Claudia. Thanks for being here 🙂 Remembering that it’s not a life-or-death struggle has been helpful to me as well. As Paul says in his comment, we are “safe and sound at home.”
Hope your summer is going well –
Is persecution as a projection into the experience of forgiveness to ease into separation as I stand on the sidelines and watch the world go by. I hope I am making sense here as I am trying to understand as I stufy the Course a natural movement into another way to be happens to me, a door so to speak.
Thanks for reading and sharing, Laureen. I’m not sure that I followed that first sentence, but let me try an answer. Forgive me if I’m being too wordy or unresponsive 🙂
In a sense, all projection is a form of persecution because it tries to teach us that we are something we are not. We do suffer when we project; even when we temporarily mitigate the suffering (by dragging others along with us, or by denying the suffering, or pretending we’re special, whatever) it still hurts.
We are an expression of Love; seeing ourselves in any other light is an error. Confusion, discomfort and, yes, suffering follow.
We are not separated from Love. In a sense, remembering this is the simplest thing in the world. In another sense, because we’ve tangled ourselves into such psychological and metaphysical knots, remembering we are love is basically impossible.
Forgiveness in ACIM is a way of giving attention to our experience in and of the world that is – through the Holy Spirit’s grace and participation – a little more open-minded than usual. It’s a little more willing to be corrected. So we look at the world – at our homes, our jobs, our relationships, our communities, our planet, the universe, all of it. We just gently look and as much as possible remain open and willing to be shown what Bill Thetford called “another way.”
And yes, this other way is real, and yes, it makes us happy, and yes – it can be likened to a door which opens and through we stride, hand in hand with one another, into a joy and peace that surpass our limited ability to understand.
I’m glad you’re here. I have deep respect for the hard questions, the painful questions, the scary questions. It is through the appearance of hell – which is quite persuasive, else we wouldn’t need help – that we remember Heaven.
Whether you are aware of it or not, you have one hand already on the door knob of joy. You are allowed – whenever you are ready – to open it and pass through.
Thank you for being here and sharing.
Thank you so much for responding to me, I cried in my stomach, not a sob, not a tear, more a relief a pat on my head, a rumble in the gut….I am writing a log from human to spirit, it is not a smooth road, full of doubts and lingering loneliness and I wonder about the separation from others not able to talk about the course, not participate in life, lonely for God, waiting for a substantial awakening not just stuttering moments of joy. And the ever presence of ego pulling me into projections and its companion defenceless. Thank you for being here Sean, finally a voice I can wrap around my struggles, a friend, I can share my love of love and God, and hear your cry for evidence and proof . I hope I can give you that stalk in the field as fragile as it is. Thank you sincerely. L.
You’re welcome, Laureen. I’m glad you’re here. Be lonely no more 🙂 I relate a great deal to “stuttering joy” by the way. And from the bottom of my heart can say that stuttering becomes a song and the song becomes the cosmos and the cosmos are Love Itself. Truly.
Are you saying that when your Soulmate left you you had this profound realization? Upon years in ACIM you found it wasn’t needed? Do we have to go through this life (dream) in order to have this realization? If so, this life does have purpose does it not? So even God is an illusion? And we realize we are the stillness of Love?
Lots of questions 🙂 Thank you for reading and sharing.
1. Nobody left anybody! At least last I checked nobody had 🙂
Often we have the experience of the one in whom the whole perfection of God as Love shines like a supernova. This other can be a person, a dog, a landscape or even a belief system. It’s nice when this happens and it can carry us a long way.
But eventually it is seen for what it is: a belief cherished by a separate self that reinforces separation. Then the holiest of holy relationships becomes just another ego chaos app.
We have to let go of ALL idols.
That is hard to do. It is incredibly hard.
What is let go is the belief that God/Love IS the other: that God IS Mount Ascutney, IS my late dog Jake, IS my wife Chrisoula TO THE EXCLUSION of other mountains, people and animals. That’s what makes it an idol – the belief that God is here and not there, this and not that.
In other words, yes. Of course God is in Mount Ascutney and Chrisoula. But God is also in Cheryl and beaches in Virginia, and Jessica and lakes in Michigan and so forth.
If you are really really lucky, the one in whom you see God this way, and then learn you were only confused, will know exactly what is going on, and will join you in letting go.
I wish that level of holy relationship on all my brothers and sisters. It is an incredible gift.
2. The soulmate/holy relationships was profoundly important. But it’s like talking on the phone, right? When I get the message, I hang up the phone. A Holy Relationship is a site of learning; when you learn the lesson, you move along.
This does not necessarily mean that you never climb Mount Ascutney again!
When you see you have been confused about God, and have projected God unto a person/place/thing, you let go of the projection. This is hard because you think you’re giving something up, but in fact you’re about to remember that you both HAVE and ARE everything.
You still love the other (I’m hoping to climb Ascutney later this summer, as a matter of fact) but the holiness of the love is no longer limited to that person. It’s everywhere and in all things. You no longer have to choose (which brings to an end SO MUCH of the pressure we live under). There is nothing to choose between. Even living and dying are illusions, false dichotomies that are meaningless in the vast and bountiful emptiness of Love.
(“Vast and bountiful emptiness of Love” is poetic horseshit. I’m sorry!!)
So yes, as we remember God as Love – and as that becomes our default state – our existing relationships (with people, places, things) gently shift in focus, function and intention. We no longer need them to create chaos; we no longer need substitutes for love; and we are happy to let everything be.
3. I would not tell anybody what experience they have to go through in order to remember God as Love. Nor would I presume that my experience should mirror their own. I try to be honest here and I try to bring my various skills of reading and critical thinking to bear on that honesty. If it’s helpful, great. If not, that’s great too.
4. The ways in which I use the word “life” all align with the idea that life has a purpose or function.
Basically I think the purpose of life is to remember its origin in Love.
5. Yes. Even God is an illusion 🙂 That is because if we can name it, then we have singled it out, and if we can single it out, then it is no longer whole/one/love/etc. “God” is one word among so many others that humans use to point to that which cannot actually be signified.
As I point out here something is real in our experience before we name it. What is that?
That post addresses some other issues in this comment thread as well.
6. We are not separate from Love. Therefore, there is no “we.” “We,” like “I,” is an illusion. Oneness is not like a bunch of separated ones combine, like how fifty separate potato chips become One Bowl of potato chips. It’s like there were never a bunch of separated ones in the first place.
Love is doing everything 🙂 There is no Sean, only Love waking up from a dream in which it wasn’t itself, which is silly and impossible.
Thank you again for your questions, Sydney.
Sean, thank you. I may or may not climb Mt. Ascutney again…lol.
I’m getting this. When I first read this post it touched me deeply so of course I had to question it…lol. I ended up being a writer but started off as a dancer. I think it’s time to shift to dancing again…
I’m grateful for questions, love opportunities to think and look for the seams and the edges 🙂
I think a lot about dancing. I really love it but I am very stiff and awkward, unless I’m alone or with a small number of people I really trust. It is a very spiritual thing to dance, and the linear rational mind doesn’t really enter the process. I think that’s what appeals to me about it.
I was joking on twitter recently that this video was made by somebody who knows all my very limited dance moves:
But writing is fun too . . .
Thanks for being here Sydney 🙏
yw, Sean. wow what a video. dance approaching the mystery