Friday, March 01, 2013

Making Explicit the True Meaning of Forgiveness: February FB Statuses

Some time ago, I set up a Facebook account, but I never really did much with it, until Sunday 8 April, Easter Sunday, 2012, auspiciously, when I decided to post a Status statement on Facebook, daily, for one year, to Easter,  2013.   These are my mini-essays for February, 2013.

I don’t  know about you, but I am in serious need of a timeout.  Things are getting pretty crazy around here at Endeavor Academy.

And once again, Thank God for A Course in Miracles.
Now, I don’t know about you, but I am going to sit down and breathe in and breathe out and do Lesson 31, I am not a victim of the world I see.

The inner is the cause of the outer.  As you survey your inner world, merely let whatever thoughts cross your mind come into your awareness, each to be considered for a moment, and then replaced by the next. Try not to establish any kind of hierarchy among them. Watch them come and go as dispassionately as possible. Do not dwell on any one in particular, but try to let the stream move on evenly and calmly, without any special investment on your part. As you sit and quietly watch your thoughts, repeat today's idea to yourself as often as you care to, but with no sense of hurry.

Thank you,  Father.

I woke up much too early this morning, facing another difficult day, wondering about our future. 

Reading a passage from Jesus Calling, scribed by Sarah Young was very comforting.  Now, “comfort” often takes on a soft, fluffy association, like a down comforter, but the word actually comes from the Latin, comfortare,  meaning “to strengthen much.” 

FOLLOW ME ONE STE AT A TIME.  That is all I require of you. In fact, that is the only way to move through this space/time world.  You see huge mountains looming and you start wondering  how you’re going to scale those heights.  Meanwhile, because you’re not looking where you’re going, you stumble on the easy path where I am leading you now.  As I help you get back on your feet, you tell Me how worried you are about the cliffs up ahead.  But you don’t know what will happen today, much less tomorrow.  Our path may take an abrupt turn, leading you away from those mountains.  There may be an easier way up mountains than is visible from this distance.  If I do lead you up the cliffs, I will equip you thoroughly for that strenuous climb, I will even give My angels charge over you, to preserve you in all your ways.

Keep your mind on the present journey, enjoying My Presence.  Walk by faith, not by sight, trusting Me to open up the way before you.
(February 1)

And now, I feel much strengthened to face this day.

I am so grateful for reminders that enable me to shift out of the incessant mind chatter of my noisy mind and sink into the peace and quiet and stillness that is my natural inheritance.  (And, as  far as synchronicity, I just finished reading the Lesson for today, 34, I could see peace instead of this.)

Here is a passage from Francois Fenelon (1651-1715, France)

God never ceases to speak to us; but the noise of the world without, and the tumult of our passions within, bewilder us, and prevent us from listening.  All must be silent around us, and all must be still within us, when we would listen with whole souls to this voice.  It is a still, small voice, and is only heard by those who listen to no other.  Alas!  How seldom is it that the soul is so still that it can hear when God speaks to it! 

And this is from one of my favorite Lessons, 49, God's Voice speaks to me all through the day.

It is quite possible to listen to God's Voice all through the day without interrupting your regular activities in any way. The part of your mind in which truth abides is in constant communication with God, whether you are aware of it or not. It is the other part of your mind that functions in the world and obeys the world's laws. It is this part that is constantly distracted, disorganized and highly uncertain.

The part that is listening to the Voice for God is calm, always at rest and wholly certain. It is really the only part there is. The other part is a wild illusion, frantic and distraught, but without reality of any kind. Try today not to listen to it. Try to identify with the part of your mind where stillness and peace reign forever. Try to hear God's Voice call to you lovingly, reminding you that your Creator has not forgotten His Son.

I am so grateful for the book that my friend, Darrell Price, scribed for Jesus, From The Christ Mind.

When I talked to him about reading it, I told him that I am reading it very slowly, one Section at a time because this is all I can do.  It takes me out.  I expressed it to him that it is like savoring food, bite by bite.  He said that is what Jesus said, “Read it slowly and savor it.” This came to mind the other day when I read the Introduction to a book of Rumi’s poems, entitled The Forbidden Rumi.

For you, nothing less than the immediate and direct experience of what might be called God will do.  You need to put it right in your mouth, taste it, chew it (slowly), and then spend time digesting it, feeling it, becoming it, before you can find the satisfaction you seek.  And one great meal will not do it for you, either.  You need to eat and drink and feast on the divine every chance you get.  Your stomach for God is bottomless.
(p. 1,2)

And here is the first paragraph of Chapter One of  From The Christ Mind.

Whenever humans are gathered together in Love, to fulfill Love’s purpose, I am there.  No one can fail to seek the Truth.  Every human mind is looking for Truth although you may not be conscious of that fact.  Ultimately it does not matter whether you understand the true goal of human life, for you will be drawn to it in time.  Until then you may substitute goals of your own making, goals without meaning, for the Truth you really seek.  It does not matter.  All things purposeless and temporary will pass away leaving only Truth in the end.  The end is certain as are the means through which it is reached.  You can make use of them when and where you choose.  That and only that is up to you.  To wait, or to decide for Truth here and now, are your only two options.  If yo make this decision now, you can save yourself much time and suffering.  And I strongly recommend you do so.
  (p. 17)

From The Christ Mind is now available on Amazon.

Lesson 34 is particularly helpful  for me today, I could see peace instead of this.  For me, right now, the reference to “this” is the craziness occurring at Endeavor Academy.  Thoughts readily come to mind as I do the exercises for today.

Search your mind for fear thoughts, anxiety-provoking situations, "offending" personalities or events, or anything else about which you are harboring unloving thoughts. Note them all casually, repeating the idea for today slowly as you watch them arise in your mind, and let each one go, to be replaced by the next.
I love His metaphor, harboring unloving thoughts.  What we choose to bring into the harbor of our minds is ours in every moment.  In the midst of all this, it is good to be reminded that I “could” experience peace, that this is an opportunity to learn to see, even this, with vision.  “Opportunity” comes from the Latin, ob portum veniens,” meaning to sail into a harbor, under a favorable wind.

I can replace my feelings of depression, anxiety or worry with peace. 6:4

We have all experienced how unreliable our memories are.  I was reminded of this by reading an article by Oliver Sacks, Speak, Memory in The New York  Review.  In the winter of 1940-41, Sacks was an eight-year-old child living in London, and he remembered a bomb falling behind his house.

An incendiary bomb,  a thermite bomb, fell behind our house and burned with a terrible, white-hot heat.  My father pumped water on it, and it caused a vicious hissing and sputtering when the water hit the white-hot metal. 
(February 21, 2013, p. 19)

He recently wrote about it in a book, and when his older brother, Michael, read it, he told Sacks that it never happened; they were living in a boarding school at the time.
Sacks goes on to say that, Such subjectivity is built into the very nature of memory, and follows from its basis and mechanisms in the human brain. P. 21)

This brings to mind this passage from Lesson 182, I will be still an instant and go home.

Perhaps you think it is your childhood home that you would find again. The childhood of your body, and its place of shelter, are a memory now so distorted that you merely hold a picture of a past that never happened.

Jesus reminds us in His Text, that we can learn to use memory, correctly, enabling us to remember God.

The Holy Spirit can indeed make use of memory, for God Himself is there. Yet this is not a memory of past events, but only of a present state. You are so long accustomed to believe that memory holds only what is past, that it is hard for you to realise it is a skill that can remember now. The limitations on remembering the world imposes on it are as vast as those you let the world impose on you. There is no link of memory to the past. If you would have it there, then there it is. But only your desire made the link, and only you, have held it to a part of time where guilt appears to linger still.

We are really up against it, thinking all this time that the images we see are presenting to us reality.

Right now I am in the middle of all kinds of images, sitting in our Sun Room on a snowy afternoon.  I am watching a movie on television, and I glance out the window and see the birds at the feeder.  The tree branches are full of fluffy snow, and the television against the window seems to be topped with snow as well, but actually, the snow is on the top of the fence, at exactly the same height.  Not only that, but my little, wooden Cardinal is sitting on top of the television, appearing to be sitting in the snow, as well.

Not only that, but I am watching actors play characters, reading scripted lines, garbed in costumes.  The world of images outside my window is no more real that the world emanating from the television screen.

Here is the first paragraph of Lesson 15,  My thoughts are images that I have made.

It is because the thoughts you think you think appear as images that you do not recognize them as nothing. You think you think them, and so you think you see them. This is how your "seeing" was made. This is the function you have given your body's eyes. It is not seeing. It is image making. It takes the place of seeing, replacing vision with illusions.

It helps me to remember, also, that the actor is to his character, as the Christ is to the actor.  In his everyday life, the actor probably thinks he is human, when all the time he is the Christ, the Son of God.

Here is the first paragraph of Lesson 37,  My holiness blesses the world.

This idea contains the first glimmerings of your true function in the world, or why you are here. Your purpose is to see the world through your own holiness. Thus are you and the world blessed together. No one loses; nothing is taken away from anyone; everyone gains through your holy vision. It signifies the end of sacrifice because it offers everyone his full due. And he is entitled to everything because it is his birthright as a Son of God.

I am so grateful to have had the blessed privilege of being in the presence of Master Teacher of Endeavor Academy for several years, and I still feel the blessing of his presence from time to time.

To stand for a moment and make eye contact with him was everything.  It was a silent Namaste moment.  It was the first time in my life that I experienced such holiness.  I was reminded of this experience while reading Lesson 38, There is nothing my holiness cannot do.  While reading the first paragraph, I found myself substituting Master Teacher as the reference for each pronoun.  In other words, Jesus is actually addressing the reader with “your” and “you.”

Your holiness reverses all the laws of the world. It is beyond every restriction of time, space, distance and limits of any kind. Your holiness is totally unlimited in its power because it establishes you as a Son of God, at one with the Mind of his Creator.

And because I woke up as a result of being in his presence, I can now own my holiness in the second paragraph.

Through your holiness the power of God is made manifest. Through your holiness the power of God is made available. And there is nothing the power of God cannot do. Your holiness, then, can remove all pain, can end all sorrow, and can solve all problems. It can do so in connection with yourself and with anyone else. It is equal in its power to help anyone because it is equal in its power to save anyone.

In an attempt to find peace of mind in the midst of craziness right now, I read Lesson 46, God is the Love in which I forgive.  I began doing this exercise:

If you are doing the exercises well you should have no difficulty in finding a number of people you have not forgiven. It is a safe rule that anyone you do not like is a suitable subject. Mention each one by name, and say:

God is the Love in which I forgive you, [name].

Then I read, again, the second paragraph.

Yet although God does not forgive, His Love is nevertheless the basis of forgiveness. Fear condemns and love forgives. Forgiveness thus undoes what fear has produced, returning the mind to the awareness of God. For this reason, forgiveness can truly be called salvation. It is the means by which illusions disappear.

Hmmm. . .illusions “disappear.” I thought of disappearing ink, and I wondered how it actually worked, thinking it might be good metaphor.  I went to a fabric store and bought a Disappearing Ink Marking Pen.  I came home and grabbed an old, white t-shirt, and did the exercise, again, writing names with the Marking Pen.

Then I wiped the names away with a damp cloth.

“Et Voila” it worked!  Although my illusions seem to be solidly written in my mind, they can easily be washed away with the cleansing of forgiveness.

I am continuing to be energized by my new-found, slight grasp of quantum physics as a metaphor for my experience with A Course in Miracles. The energy of God,  the wave, is pouring through the universe, infinite Love.  When we stop for a moment, breathe in and breathe out, letting go of our particularizing thoughts, we can come into contact in our minds with the wave, melting into it.

But, for too much of the time, we are caught in time, observing with the body’s eyes, forming this object and that object, and in the act of observation, the wave becomes a particle.

I have often thought of this analogy:  the wave is to the ocean, as a particle is to a bubble.

This came to mind when I read about Rumi’s quantum experience when he met Shams in the Introduction to The Forbidden Rumi, edited by Nevit O. Ergin and Will Johnson.

The two men are reported to have met on a roadway.  Something extraordinary was exchanged between them through their glance, and throwing both their lives and decorum to the winds, they went on together into a closed-door retreat, emerging several months later in a state of ecstatic illumination familiar to the Sufi tradition.  Through the prolonged power of their gaze and the exploration of intentional movements, Rumi and Shams dissolved the confining bubbles of separation that ordinarily encase us and mesmerize us into believing that who we are is an entity named “I” that lives inside our individual body and remains separate from everything that exists outside the body.  Pop the bubble and you find yourself swimming in a consciousness that perceives itself as merged with the ultimate source of existence.  The Sufis call this consciousness of union, the healing antidote to the fear and alienation that pervade the far more common consciousness of separation.
  (p. 3)

Your holiness is the wave, and here is the first paragraph of Lesson 38, There is nothing my holiness cannot do.

Your holiness reverses all the laws of the world. It is beyond every restriction of time, space, distance and limits of any kind. Your holiness is totally unlimited in its power because it establishes you as a Son of God, at one with the Mind of his Creator.

OK.  I’ll say it again, “Thank God for A Course in Miracles.”  I found Lesson 41, God goes with me wherever I go, to be especially comforting, in the literal sense of giving me strength.

Today's idea will eventually overcome completely the sense of loneliness and abandonment all the separated ones experience. Depression is an inevitable consequence of separation. So are anxiety, worry, a deep sense of helplessness, misery, suffering and intense fear of loss
. 1

As the day goes on, I tend to lapse into allegiance with the ego’s fear thoughts;  it’s just a matter of remembering and forgetting.

Throughout the day use today's idea often, repeating it very slowly, preferably with eyes closed. Think of what you are saying; what the words mean. Concentrate on the holiness that they imply about you; on the unfailing companionship that is yours; on the complete protection that surrounds you
. 9

You can indeed afford to laugh at fear thoughts, remembering that God goes with you wherever you go.

While reading Lesson 109, I rest in God, I was reminded, once again, of what a consummate poet Jesus is, blending sound and sense, structure and content, as He reassures me, hushing me into stillness, lulling me into a peaceful rest with His sheer poetry.

As you read the following paragraph, be aware of the various repetitions:  alliteration, initial sounds (fear of future); consonance, consonants (rest and respite reassure); and assonance, vowels (dreams and into peace).

In Him you have no cares and no concerns,
no burdens, no anxiety, no pain,
no fear of future and no past regrets.
In timelessness you rest, while time goes by
without its touch upon you, for your rest
can never change in any way at all.
You rest today. And as you close your eyes,
sink into stillness. Let these periods
of rest and respite reassure your mind
that all its frantic fantasies were but
the dreams of fever that has passed away.
Let it be still and thankfully accept
its healing. No more fearful dreams will come,
now that you rest in God. Take time today
to slip away from dreams and into peace.


The other day, my friend, Pat Connor, brought to my attention a book of Rumi’s poetry,  entitled, The Forbidden Rumi edited by Nevit Ergin and Will Johnson.  This passage in the Introduction caught my eye.

After being split wide open through the explosive encounter with his great friend Shams, Rumi let go of many of the precepts of formal religion, insisting instead that only a complete personal dissolving into the larger energies of God can provide the satisfaction that the heart so desperately seeks.
(p. 3)

This reminds of the first paragraph in From the Christ Mind, scribed by Darrell Price, listening to Jesus. 


Whenever humans are gathered together in Love, to fulfill Love’s purpose, I am there.  No one can fail to seek the Truth.  Every human mind is looking for Truth although you may not be conscious of that fact.  Ultimately it does not matter whether you understand the t rue goal of human life, for you will be drawn to it in time.  Until then you may substituted goals of your own making, goals without meaning, for the Truth you really seek.  It does not matter.  All things purposeless and temporary will pass away leaving only Truth in the end.  The end is certain as are the means through which it is reached.  You can make use of them when and where you choose.  That and only that is up to you.  To wait, or to decide for Truth here and now are your only two options.  If you make this decision now, you can save yourself much time and suffering.  And I strongly recommend you do so. 
(p. 17)

This is a special day to celebrate our hearts beating in love for each other and for God.

Jesus has written a good part of His Course in such a way that it echoes our beating hearts in its rhythm.

My heart is beating in the peace of God
. (Lesson 267)

With the emphasis on every other syllable, we can read it and hear it echoing our hearts beating:

my HEART/ is BEAT/ ing IN/ the PEACE/ of GOD./

I urge you to find your pulse, and feeling your pulse, read this line again, coordinating the stressed syllable with the beat of your pulse.

Now I am going to read these lines very slowly, coordinating my pulse with its stresses, celebrating my love for God, and Christine, and I invite you, Dear Reader, to celebrate your love, as well.

Surrounding me is all the life that God
created in His Love. It calls to me
in every heartbeat and in every breath;
in every action and in every thought.
Peace fills my heart, and floods my body with
the purpose of forgiveness. Now my mind
is healed, and all I need to save the world
is given me. Each heartbeat brings me peace;
each breath infuses me with strength. I am
a messenger of God, directed by
His Voice, sustained by Him in love, and held
forever quiet and at peace within
His loving Arms. Each heartbeat calls His Name,
and every one is answered by His Voice,
assuring me I am at home in Him.

Our  hearts are beating in sync with the rhythm of the universe.


I saw an intriguing title of an article in a newspaper the other day, “Statesman wrote about encounters with ghosts.”  I was eager to read it because I am so tired of politicians wrangling about this and that taking place in the dream.

Territorial Gov. Nathaniel Tallmadge was not only a statesman; he was a psychic.

After serving as a U.S. senator and governor of the Wisconsin Territory, Tallmadge discovered spiritualism and wrote about his ghostly encounters.  One of these was with his former Senate colleague, John C. Calhoun.

In February 1853, Tallmadge reported attending a séance at which Calhoun rapped out letters on the dining room table.  Asked why spirits manifested themselves in the human world, the ghost replied, “It is to draw mankind together in harmony, and convince skeptics of the immortality of the sou.”  (Wisconsin State Journal, 1/30/2013, Section, A, p. 2)

And then what came to mind is this passage from William Wordsworth, Ode:  Intimations of Immortality.

Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting:
The Soul that rises with us, our life’s Star,
Hath had elsewhere its setting,
And cometh from afar:
Not in entire forgetfulness,
And not in utter nakedness,
But trailing clouds of glory do we come
From God, who is our home.

And of course, the Course:

Nothing real can be threatened;
Nothing unreal exists.
Herein lies the peace of God.


Lesson 49, God’s Voice speaks to me all through the day.

It is always a matter of my readiness to hear His Voice.  How do I get ready?  Well, as my friend, Jack Davis, was fond of saying, “I stay ready, so that I don’t have to get ready.”  Pretty profound.  How do I stay ready?  This train of thought started with this passage from Lesson 42, God is my strength.  Vision is His gift.

We will have two three-to-five-minute practice periods today, one as soon as possible after you wake, and another as close as possible to the time you go to sleep. It is better, however, to wait until you can sit quietly by yourself, at a time when you feel “ready,” than it is to be concerned with the time as such. 3

There we are, simply sit quietly and be receptive.

Here are some other reminders from the Course.

I will provide the opportunities to do miracles, but you must be ready and willing.

And each one finds his savior when he is ready to look upon the face of Christ, and see Him sinless. 

Freedom from conflict has been given you.  Accept that fact, and you are ready to take your rightful place in God’s plan for salvation.

Yet must there be a place made ready to receive His gifts.

Now are you ready to experience the  joy and peace you have denied yourself.

And I stand ready to receive Your Word alone for what I really am.

And here am I made ready for Your final step.


What a gift!  Here I am, only 44 days into the new year, experiencing Lesson 44, God is the light in which I see, and I can close my eyes, sit quietly, and be aware that I can experience either hell, or holiness.  My choice.

It may seem innocuous, but these idle thoughts are keeping me in hell.  “I like this, and I don’t like that;” “I like him, I don’t like her;” “I like it better there;” “I wish it were warmer, or colder;” and on and on,  chatter, chatter.

Thank God for the daily practice.

While you practice in this way, you leave behind everything that you now believe, and all the thoughts that you have made up. Properly speaking, this is the release from hell. Yet perceived through the ego's eyes, it is loss of identity and a descent into hell. 5:4,5
I need only remember that when I practice letting go of these meaningless thoughts, “I am doing something very holy.”

If you are doing the exercises correctly, you should experience some sense of relaxation, and even a feeling that you are approaching, if not actually entering into light. Try to think of light, formless and without limit, as you pass by the thoughts of this world. And do not forget that they cannot hold you to the world unless you give them the power to do so. 10


These days I am doing the Lessons with increased intensity.  Here is a paragraph that particularly struck me from Lesson 45, God is the Mind with which I think.

Under all the senseless thoughts and mad ideas with which you have cluttered up your mind are the thoughts that you thought with God in the beginning. They are there in your mind now, completely unchanged. They will always be in your mind, exactly as they always were. Everything you have thought since then will change, but the Foundation on which it rests is wholly changeless. 7

So I finished reading the Lesson, closed my eyes, and breathing in and breathing out, consciously, and this Thought came to mind:

I am God's Son, complete and healed and whole, shining in the reflection of His Love. In me is His creation sanctified and guaranteed eternal life. 14. What am I?  1:1

Thank you, Father.

And thank Him for the Thoughts He is thinking with you. 9:4


I like to think that there is a particular salute that is invaluable in my transformation; I call it “The Academy Salute.”  It looks like this:  I bring my right-index finger toward my face and touch the tip of my nose with it, then drop my hand to my side.

This is a reminder that it all ends at the tip of my nose, that what’s outside is only the inside projected, or extended.  It's all me.  With this recognition, I experience forgiveness.

The fact is, I don’t forgive another person, I always only forgive myself for having a thought/image of the other person.   And Jesus breaks it down into two steps for us in Lesson 46, God is the Love in which I forgive.

If you are doing the exercises well you should have no difficulty in finding a number of people you have not forgiven. It is a safe rule that anyone you do not like is a suitable subject. Mention each one by name, and say:
God is the Love in which I forgive you, [name].
The purpose of the first phase of today's practice periods is to put you in a position to forgive yourself. After you have applied the idea to all those who have come to mind, tell yourself:
God is the Love in which I forgive myself. 4,5

And now I can look at a person “out there” and salute my Self.

One of the keys to my transformation is to bring into application the Lessons I learn in the Course, and the teachings taking place at Endeavor Academy.  For years now, I have had the opportunity to practice the lessons while being of service working at The Academy’s Cheese Factory Restaurant.  I just love cooking there, particularly cooking breakfasts, preparing the various types of eggs--over easy, over medium, poached, scrambled, sunny up, and flipping omelettes, working with four pans at a time.

The best opportunity for application comes when it’s slamming, when there are 12 tickets across in front of me, and 12 on the other side because there’s no room in front.  It’s a dance with your brothers, the three other cooks on the Line, and the  expeditor, and the servers.

Now, what I’m talking about is standing in the midst of this craziness, breathing in and breathing out, my feed firmly grounded on the floor, and simply staying peaceful, while I do the next thing.

This came to mind this morning when I was talking with a server who worked in the madness of yesterday’s slam.  He said that, for awhile, it was impossible, it just wasn’t going well at his tables, the customers complaining, and the food coming out slowly, and he found himself just sucking it up and trying to get by. 

Then, something clicked, and the mind-training kicked in.  He said to himself, “I can shift to a peaceful place in my mind, right now,” and in that moment, he was free.

When I came home, I sat down and read Lesson 47, God is the strength in which I trust.

Try to reach down into your mind to a place of real safety. You will recognize that you have reached it if you feel a sense of deep peace, however briefly. Let go all the trivial things that churn and bubble on the surface of your mind, and reach down and below them to the Kingdom of Heaven. There is a place in you where there is perfect peace. There is a place in you where nothing is impossible. There is a place in you where the strength of God abides.

I have been at this for a while now, and for me it all comes down to awareness and receptivity.  Am I aware of my false self, or my True Self; it’s one or the other, there’s no in-between.  In the first paragraph of Lesson 49, God’s Voice speaks to me all through the day, Jesus expresses it this way.

It is quite possible to listen to God's Voice all through the day without interrupting your regular activities in any way. The part of your mind in which truth abides is in constant communication with God, whether you are aware of it or not. It is the other part of your mind that functions in the world and obeys the world's laws. It is this part that is constantly distracted, disorganized and highly uncertain. 1

My awareness of my True Self is an invitation to the Holy Spirit.

And be sure to sit quietly and repeat the idea for today whenever you can, closing your eyes on the world, and realizing that you are inviting God's Voice to speak to you. 5:3

And now I will be told where to go, what to do, and what to say, to whom.

(For example, I just received that last sentence; I thought I was finished.)

It is becoming increasingly clear to me that what I see “outside” is merely a mirror of what is “inside.”  And further, what is “inside” is, either a cluttered, narrative, or a peaceful, still state of mind.  If my mind is cluttered, I project that “outside;” if my mind is peaceful, I extend that “outside.”  So much depends on my state of mind.

I like to think that that is what William Carlos Williams (1883-1963 ) is expressing in his classic poem, The Red Wheelbarrow.

(I audaciously added the phrase in bold to make my point, imagining his intention.)

The Red Wheelbarrow

so much depends

seeing with

a red wheel
glazed with rain
beside the white
One evening not long ago, Christine and I were returning from a day of playing in Madison, and we found ourselves gazing at the “Smiley Moon.”

Christine asked, “Is that a malevolent or a benevolent smile?”  We cracked up talking about whether we were seeing with our eyes, or seeing with vision.

Seeing with our eyes:

Projection makes perception. The world you see is what you gave it, nothing more than that. But though it is no more than that, it is not less. Therefore, to you it is important. It is the witness to your state of mind, the outside picture of an inward condition. As a man thinketh, so does he perceive. T-21.Intro.1:1-5

Seeing with vision:
You cannot see apart from God because you cannot be apart from God. Whatever you do you do in Him, because whatever you think, you think with His Mind. If vision is real, and it is real to the extent to which it shares the Holy Spirit's purpose, then you cannot see apart from God. 3:3

And here is a sentence from From The Christ Mind, scribed by my friend, Darrell Price, listening to Jesus.

As your mind is healed and your spiritual vision awakened, you will see Heaven reflected here, the Love and Light of God everywhere. (p. 38)

Gazing at the moon with vision, there is no either/or, there is only experiencing a bright reflection of our peaceful minds.


I am reading this delightful book by Lorna Byrne  entitled, A Message of Hope from the Angels.

She begins:

I have been seeing and talking with angels since I was a little baby.  I see angels every day and I see them physically as I see someone sitting in front of me.  Angels are my friends and companions and I talk with them all the time, sometimes using words and sometimes without words.  I have no idea why I should be able to see angels.  I’m just an ordinary person. (p.1)

One of the things that particularly struck me about her story is her sense of responsibility for “worldly” tasks; that is, she is well aware of being “in” the world, and not “of” the world, and yet she takes seriously her responsibility “in” the world as a parent.

I am a single parent.  My husband, Joe, died after a long illness, leaving me with four children, the youngest of whom was only four, and I know how hard it is to be a single parent.  I pray to God often to help me to be the best parent possible to my children.

God and the angels have given me the task of spreading the message that everyone has a guardian angel, and that everyone has a soul, and to help me in this task God has allowed me to see angels physically.  And still, for me, the most important role or destiny in my life is to be a mother, the parent to my four children.  (p. 37)

. . .And still, for me. . .

Lorna Byrne reminds us that we are in the world, and not of the world, and yet we can ask for help to move beyond this world by taking full responsibility for being in this world.


As I close in on my goal of posting a FB Status every day from Easter, 2012, to Easter, 2013, I am delighted to find that by fully immersing myself in each day’s activities, I find ample inspiration to write a brief essay or two, every day, e.g., passages from a book, or a magazine, or a newspaper, scenes from movies, or TV Series, conversations with friends, and most obviously, passages from the Course.  All these provide “grist for the mill.” 

Literally, “grist” means grain for grinding, and the phrase means something that is useful, or something that creates a favorable opportunity.

This brings me to one of my favorite themes; since I am in full awareness that I am not of this world, yet I find myself in this world, I might as well make good use of it.  Being in the world gives me an opportunity to learn that I am not of it.

The purpose of your learning is to enable you to bring the quiet with you, and to heal distress and turmoil.  This is not done by avoiding them and seeking a haven of isolation for yourself. Review 1, Intro. 4:4,5

You will yet learn that peace is part of you, and requires only that you be there to embrace any situation in which you are.  And finally you will learn that there is no limit to where you are, so that your peace is everywhere, as you are. 5

It turns out that it is all “grist for the mill.”

On Valentine’s Day, Christine and I went to see a show at the Milwaukee Repertory Theater, called “Mind Over Milwaukee.”  For two hours, we watched the Mentalist, Marc Salem, perform one incredible mental feat after another.  I don’t know how many times my jaw dropped open, looking at Christine, shaking my head in disbelief.

I am going to describe here a few of the feats.  I am unable to fit them into any context.  Perhaps, you, Dear Reader, can help me understand these phenomena.

Marc Salem called up on stage a couple of nurses, and he asked one of them to take his pulse.  Three times he asked her what just happened:  The first time, his pulse sped up, the second time, it slowed down, the third time, it stopped.

He asked a member of the audience to come on stage, a veteran named Sergeant Baker.  Salem said to him, “There’s a gang of old ladies stealing in Milwaukee at night, and I want you to help me see what they’re up to.”

He threw a wadded up piece of paper he called a Ranomizer into the room, and he asked the person who caught it to name the gang:  HOWL.  He asked the man to throw the Randomizer across the room, and then he asked the recipient to name a place they stole from:  Casablanca.  Following this procedure, he asked what was stolen:  floorboards; who fenced them:  Dirty John; how much money did they get:  $30.00.  Then he asked Sergeant Baker to name a shape:  rectangle.

Then he said to Sergeant Baker, “Please take the wallet out of my coat pocket, open it up, take out the sealed envelope, open it, and read the list:  HOWL, Casablanca, floorboards, Dirty John, $30.00, rectangle.

He asked that the Ramdomizer be thrown again.  He asked the recipient to stand up and take the change from his pocket, and just hold it, not count it.  Then he asked him to shake it; then he wrote something down on a clipboard and handed it to a woman in the audience; then he asked the man to count the change; it turned out to be $1.35, and he asked the woman to read the number on the clipboard, and she read 135 cents.

He asked for a teacher to come up, and Christine volunteered me.  He asked me to take a book from the bookshelf, holding a couple hundred.  He asked me to give him the book, the rapidly thumbed the pages, asking me to tell him when to stop; then he handed me the book open to that page, and asked me to move my finger down the page until he said stop; I stopped at “Spence laughed,” and he tried to name the first letter, S, by going through the alphabet, abcde…and stopping at the right letter.  He tried it a couple of times, and couldn’t get it.  Then he asked me to turn to a different page, and run my finger down it until he said stop,  I stopped at the word “that.”  Then he asked me to turn to the inside back cover of the book, and read the word that appeared there written in pencil; it was “that.”


While traveling, Christine and I find the Global Positioning System to be invaluable.  Recently, we were in Milwaukee, and we wanted to go from our motel to the Repertory Theater, and she simply brought up the Navigator on her Android Smartphone, and spoke the address, and then we were guided there by a recorded voice and a map.

Now, I find this a useful analogy for the way dreamers navigate their dream by using  this navigating system:  Greed, Power, Sex.

For Greed, just look at the various Ponzi schemes; for Power, just look at the political struggles in Congress between the Republicans and Democrats, and I also include here, the religious power struggles throughout the world; for Sex, just look at the daily headlines.  I just saw this one in the USA TODAY:

Former senator Pete Domenici acknowledged he fathered a son outside of his marriage more than 30 years ago with the daughter of another senator, Paul Laxalt. (Section A. p.2, February 21,  2013)

Now, I am asking for help to navigate my daily life with Gratitude, Patience, Spirit.


Our gratitude will pave the way to Him,
and shorten our learning time by more
than you could ever dream of. Gratitude
goes hand in hand with love, and where one is
the other must be found. Lesson 163.10:1,2


Those who are certain of the outcome can afford to wait, and wait without anxiety. Patience is natural to the teacher of God. Patience is natural to those who trust. Sure of the ultimate interpretation of all things in time, no outcome already seen or yet to come can cause them fear. Manual for Teachers, 4.


You are the spirit lovingly endowed with all your Father's
Love and peace and joy. You are the spirit which completes Himself, and shares His function as Creator. He is with you always, as you are with Him.
Lesson 97.2:2,3


Master Teacher of Endeavor Academy often looked out at us gathered in Session and called us “associations.”  What he was pointing out is that we are constantly making associations in our minds as we look out at the world, willing our past thoughts onto the objects we see.

The great American poet, Wallace Stevens (1879-1955) makes this so clear in his wonderful poem,  A Study of Two Pears.  Just look at his first two stanzas.  (The first two Latin words mean “a little education,” and Stevens is saying this with tongue in cheek because it is, in fact, a huge education.)

Opusculum paedagogum.
The pears are not viols,
Nudes or bottles.
They resemble nothing else.

They are yellow forms
Composed of curves
Bulging toward the base

Just as Master Teacher was expressing, Stevens is encouraging us to see with vision.

What I think I see now is taking the place of vision.  I must let it go by realizing it has no meaning, so that vision may take its place.  Lesson 51.1:4,5

Please enjoy the rest of this poem.

They are not flat surfaces
Having curved outlines.
They are round
Tapering toward the top.

In the way they are modelled
There are bits of blue.
A hard dry leaf hangs
From the stem.

The yellow glistens.
It glistens with various yellows,
Citrons, oranges and greens
Flowering over the skin.

The shadows of the pears
Are blobs on the green cloth.
The pears are not seen
As the observer wills.