A Course in Miracles teaches – in no insignificant way – that the Holy Spirit is our Teacher (see, for example, T-5.III.10:1, T-7.VII.7:2, T-8.VIII.9:10 and T-16.I.5:6). This is a liberating idea because the Holy Spirit is a symbol of our healed mind, the condition in which it remembers perfectly its oneness with God. Thus, the Holy Spirit is not a separate being external to us who intervenes when asked, but is within us – is us – in a real and practical way.
In order to learn, we have to decide to learn. We have to want to learn. And we are all at different stages of that process. Some of us think we know it all already and some of us aren’t even asking any questions yet. Knowing where we are with respect to learning is a very personal process and it can’t be rushed or overlooked. It is on this basis that we will begin to give serious attention to real learning, real undoing. In a sense, A Course in Miracles aims to bring us to that place, where we can choose the Holy Spirit as our inner teacher.
It can be helpful to adopt an interim teacher in this process – someone (or something perhaps) that will stand in for the Holy Spirit, and help us bridge that space between unwillingness and willingness.
This is in the nature of projection! We are projecting our responsibility to learn onto somebody else and asking them to carry it for a little while. Therapists work very hard with this issue. It is not inherently unhealthy so long as the one upon whom the projection is made is aware of it and is working to undo it.
I think of Tara Singh as my teacher of A Course in Miracles. In doing so, I project onto him my holiness, my sacredness, my responsibility for decision and so forth. This is not an error because Tara Singh did not accept those projections! He knew they were there but he simply looked beyond them to our fundamental equality as creations of God. He was very skillful and attentive in bringing students to a place of decision, but he did not decide for them.
When we discover a teacher who wants only to undo our need for her or him, then we are in the presence of real grace. It is a rare quality!
I also project a great deal onto the bluets this year! I don’t think anybody else is walking around calling bluets their ACIM teacher, though of course I may be mistaken. If you have some of these pretty little flowers available, go sit with them a while. See if you are ready to be their student!
The bluets have intelligence and presence but it falls outside the brain and the world as the ego sees and thinks of it. They are creative and generous and loving but in a radically simple way. When you see their love, it is almost too much to bear. And the thought that you are not separate from them but might express the way they do . . . it brings you to silence. It brings you to stillness.
The bluets can be my teacher because they do not want anything from me! That is the sign of a true teacher – she does not want your money or your praise or your attention or anything. She is just giving of what was given to her, because she knows that the expression of God’s Love is all there is. And so you are blessed by that knowledge, and work through the details in a way that makes sense to where you are at at this particular time and place until you learn there is nothing to learn and never was.
What I am saying is that giving attention to just where we are projecting our inner teacher can be very helpful. Is it working? Are we being led home or directed outward? Is our learning in the nature of a sacrifice or a joyful acceptance of all that is? Learning is a kind of dance that happens away from what is time-bound and matter-bound. Are you hearing that song? Are you feeling that flow?