Last week I heard that Linda Wiesnewski was in hospice and I heard today that she has passed. Linda was my facilitator for the Pathways Course 909, “Wellness Through Healing The Mind,” so I got to know her somewhat then. Sometimes, we also engaged in the monthly calls that she oversaw to help those with chronic illness. In the last few months we had many conversations (on Facebook on the Daily Course Lessons as well as the Rules for Decision FB pages) about the Course and healing the body. As Myron Jones said, “Linda’s classroom was her body.”
When I came to the Course, body pain is what the ego mind had used to keep me hypnotized in the dream as well. For some students it may be money issues, for some it is addiction, for some it may be prison, for some it may be special relationships, but for me it was the body. Linda was as dedicated to helping me with Course as anyone can possibly be.
When I heard about her body’s cancer this last week I thought, “WHOA!” That was a reality check for me. So many thoughts swirled through my mind for a few days. I thought about how the Course has taught me that I am not this body. But when I heard about Linda’s terminal diagnosis my “belief” was put to the test.
I have studied spiritual subjects since the 1960’s that taught me, I am not this body. I have always believed that. Yet with Linda’s diagnosis my first reaction was a jolt of fear that shot through my body. I was shocked how fast that fear and threat of loss of Linda gripped me. I watched ego mind electrify my body with fear of death that day. Past memories of death and fear captured my mind. I have lived my life protecting my body from dying and from fear of illness and other potential dangers.
I flashed on death images that may have been from movies or from the collective consciousness. Those images smothered me with fear the last few days, even though I don’t want to admit that I’m still afraid like that. As I meditated about Linda, those images flashed through my mind like a film on a screen. The Course says, “Death is the central dream from which all illusions stem.” (M-27.1) That became very real to me this week. Death scares me so much I have spent inordinate amounts of time conjuring up “magical cures” or trying to find the “cause” of my illnesses to prevent my death.
Ironically, I have often blamed God for the death I saw, whether it was through cancer, traffic accidents or illness. How often have I or my parents said things like, “God could have saved that child from death.” Or, “God took her too early.” “Why did God let this happen?” I “made” that version of God in the dream and that version is all powerful and punishing. The irony is how often I thought I could cure what was caused by that all powerful god in my mind. I thought I could usurp God’s power to stave off death. But, as the Course says, “Who loves such a god knows not of love, because s/he has denied that life is real.” (M-27.2:5) Death was not “created” by God, rather it was made by ego mind.
Regardless, those “death images” bubbled to the surface, strangling me with fear and guilt, because I allowed ego mind to be the voice I listened to. I spent a few days flipping through the Text, letting the book fall open to whatever page came up. I kept seeing messages about Love over and over. Lesson 67 is titled, “Love created me as itself.” (W-pI.67) That means Love created Linda as Love. That means Love created me as Love. Linda is Pure Love’s Presence as am I.
There is a meditation in Pathways of Light course 203 about seeing Divine Light in each other. I did that with my student, Kalen, as her facilitator. Today I did that meditation again and I saw Linda as Divine Light. I saw her as gentle colors of whites, blues and delicate pinks that are opalescent swirling in gentle love, merging with the Pure Love flowing from God through the Christ. That same Christ, is in me because we are One.
Holy Spirit, today I will listen only to Your Voice. Holy Spirit, today I thank You for the opportunity to see where my mind still needs healing. Today, I send Love and Light to Linda and her family to bless them during this time of transition. Linda has been a joyful teacher to me and she still is my teacher, if I listen in the stillness with Holy Spirit.
Rev. Rosemarie Tropf is a Pathways of Light minister living in Safety Harbor, Florida.
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