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How We Use the Body

The body is proof that we are not one with each other or with God. It proves separation. It proves we are not like God or it proves that God is as vulnerable and vicious as we are. Mostly, we use the body to prove that we can undo what God has done and thus set ourselves up as our own gods, conquering even our Creator.

To keep this belief in place requires constant vigilance and reoccurring proof. Sickness, pain, suffering, and death are useful for that purpose. We can pretend that they just happened to us and thus prove we are not the Son of God after all, but the son of ego instead. Sickness and pain allow us to turn cause and effect on its head. Instead of the mind being the cause of all that happens, the body seems to be the cause of what is happening to us. Death allows us to usurp God in the ultimate sense as we destroy ourselves before He gets the chance to do so.

All of this we hide from ourselves until the Course helps us to uncover it. I don’t believe any of this anymore and yet, there must still be a desire to see the body as the decision maker because I still get sick. I still experience pain. I used to feel distressed when I thought about this. If I hadn’t yet been able to disregard this ego belief, would I ever? I am no longer impatient or concerned. I know to continue to see what is happening and to ask that my mind be healed. I want freedom. I want to remember what I am and I want to remember God as He Is.

Forgive, love and be grateful. Do this in everything.

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Manual for Teachers, 7. Should Healing Be Repeated? P 4. 8-15-20

7. SHOULD HEALING BE REPEATED? P 4
4 One of the most difficult temptations to recognize is that to doubt a healing because of the appearance of continuing symptoms is a mistake in the form of lack of trust. As such it is an attack. Usually it seems to be just the opposite. It does appear unreasonable at first to be told that continued concern is attack. It has all the appearances of love. Yet love without trust is impossible, and doubt and trust cannot coexist. And hate must be the opposite of love, regardless of the form it takes. Doubt not the gift and it is impossible to doubt its result. This is the certainty that gives God’s teachers the power to be miracle workers, for they have put their trust in Him.

When I read this section, I think about the time my son was very sick. I prayed for his healing, and was discouraged because his symptoms continued. I became confused and thought I had not prayed right or that my prayer was not being answered. My confusion came from thinking I knew how the prayer should be answered. It also came because I forgot that I was praying that my son’s my mind be healed, and so was looking to his body for proof. I was also insisting he accept the healing whether he was ready for it or not.

While he was still experiencing symptoms, he would call me to talk about it. He was so sick and was also afraid because he didn’t know what was wrong or what to do about it. I felt really bad for him and expressed my concern because that is what love does. But is that true? Does love doubt? Does love fear? What if I put my fear and doubt into words? What if I gave my feelings words? It would sound like this:

“Toby, you want to be whole and perfect but I don’t see that happening for you. You just don’t seem willing to accept this. Maybe if you were stronger and less vulnerable. Maybe if you were not so weak. As it is, I have prayed and prayed and you just won’t get well. I’m started to feel like you are proof that my prayers are inadequate, and I resent this. I’m tired of feeling helpless before your helplessness and fearful before your fearfulness. Please get well or stop torturing me with your stories of refusing to get well. Oh God, what a horrible mom I am. I can’t help you and now I resent you.”

Of course, I didn’t say these words or even think them, or at least I didn’t let myself realize I was thinking them. That’s a nifty trick of the ego, that instant amnesia when the thoughts are too revealing. But even without my active participation in the thoughts, they do their job of keeping me in hell. And looking at them like this, seeing what it means to doubt a healing, I have no trouble understanding what Jesus tells us. Continued concern is attack, not love. If doubt is not love, and clearly it isn’t, then it must be hate.

I came back to this situation because it is a very clear example of an unhealed healer attempting to heal. When finally, through surrender I prayed truly with my friends, I received a healing. It was my own healing. I let go of the need to see any change in my precious son. I let go of the need to see him meet my expectations, and gave him, instead, the gift of my acceptance. I released him to be sick or even to die if that was important to his lesson. This was my healing. His followed shortly after.

I often write about this situation because it was such a profound healing for me and was rich with many lessons that transfer in my life to other situations. When it happened, I didn’t see how all the lessons at once; I only felt the deep peace that comes from healing. I see that all my errors stemmed from one. I doubted the gift. I doubted its Source. As Jesus says:

“Doubt not the gift and it is impossible to doubt its result. This is the certainty that gives God’s teachers the power to be miracle workers, for they have put their trust in Him.”

Does this mean that to be a healer, we must be completely healed? Not at all. We all have moments of clarity and in those moments, we are healers. If we use the body’s eyes to detect proof of healing we have moved into doubt and now the healer becomes the patient. We can then correct the problem by surrendering to the Holy Spirit and once again remembering that we are instruments of healing.

That we retreat back into fear does not negate the moment when we were in Love. And neither is it a lost moment because the feeling of being even a shadow of the true self is a powerful inducement to continue the practices. Failing to stay in a more awakened state is not a failure at all, just another step toward total realization, as we use it to ask for healing.

“Holy Spirit, please help us to remember Who it is that heals. When we are tempted to think the personality self is doing this, shake us awake. OK? Then we’ll have a good laugh.”

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True Forgiveness

I am working on a course through Pathways of Light. There is a prayer in it that I like very much and the course asked me to try this and write about it. This is what I wrote.

True Forgiveness

This thought of distress

or conflict is a lie.

I am willing to let it go.

It was fathered by fear

And will not protect me.

It is a defense

against the Truth.

I no longer need to make

this form of separation real.

I had to get my car serviced today and there were several people not wearing their masks or not wearing them properly. My first thought was one of judgment and that judgment caused me immediate distress. I decided to let it go because it was obvious it was fathered by fear. My judgment could not protect me. In fact, my judgment against my brothers was a defense against Love. It only resulted in making me feel separate and vulnerable and did absolutely no good for anyone. I have been asking the Holy Spirit to point to these errant ego thoughts so I could decide if I want to keep them or not. Definitely a “not” this morning. I relaxed and opened my heart to love and acceptance of everyone. I was happy and peaceful. This is such a better choice.

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Manual for Teachers, 7. Should Healing Be Repeated? P 3. 8-10-20

7. SHOULD HEALING BE REPEATED? P 3
3 It is in this that the teacher of God must trust. This is what is really meant by the statement that the one responsibility of the miracle worker is to accept the Atonement for himself. The teacher of God is a miracle worker because he gives the gifts he has received. Yet he must first accept them. He need do no more, nor is there more that he could do. By accepting healing he can give it. If he doubts this, let him remember Who gave the gift and Who received it. Thus is his doubt corrected. He thought the gifts of God could be withdrawn. That was a mistake, but hardly one to stay with. And so the teacher of God can only recognize it for what it is, and let it be corrected for him.

I understand that as I am healed, that is, as I accept the Atonement for myself, I am a healer. I heal all the time simply by my presence and my certainty.  My mind is a light that shines away the darkness of sickness as it shines away the darkness of false beliefs. If I doubt, this is no longer true. My doubt would take me out of the state of clarity that allowed healing, and that means I am the one that needs healing. As the saying goes, “Physician, heal thyself,” or more correctly, “Healer, heal thyself.”

Does this mean that to be a healer, we must be completely healed? Not at all. We all have moments of clarity and in those moments, we are healers. If we use the body’s eyes to detect proof of healing we have moved into doubt and now the healer becomes the patient. We can then correct the problem by surrendering to the Holy Spirit and once again remembering that we are instruments of healing.

That we retreat back into fear does not negate the moment when we were in Love. And neither is it a lost moment because the feeling of being even a shadow of the true self is a powerful inducement to continue the practices. Failing to stay in a more awakened state is not a failure at all, just another step toward total realization, as we use it to ask for healing.

Holy Spirit, please help us to remember Who it is that heals. When we are tempted to think the personality self is doing this, shake us awake. OK? Then we’ll have a good laugh.

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Excerpt from 905: Special Relationships VS Holy Relationships. T-15.IX.P7

T-15.IX. P 7
7 When the body ceases to attract you, and when you place no value on it as a means of getting anything, then there will be no interference in communication and your thoughts will be as free as God’s. As you let the Holy Spirit teach you how to use the body only for purposes of communication, and renounce its use for separation and attack which the ego sees in it, you will learn you have no need of a body at all. In the holy instant there are no bodies, and you experience only the attraction of God. Accepting it as undivided you join Him wholly, in an instant, for you would place no limits on your union with Him. The reality of this relationship becomes the only truth that you could ever want. All truth is here.

“When the body ceases to attract you, and when you place no value on it as a means of getting anything”
How do I do this? When I think I need a particular body to be in my sphere of influence or when I think I need it near me for the purpose of getting something, such as attention, affection, respect, proof that I am loved, comfort, stability, friendship, satisfaction, gratification or anything else, this is when I am attracted to the body and am placing value in it for what I can get from it.

This is the basis of the special relationship and this will not bring me happiness or peace because it places limits on communication. It is actually an attack. I might as well grab you up and imprison you because that is what I would be trying to do. I would imprison you to my needs. I can remember thinking and at one time in my life even saying, “If you loved me you would ________.” I can remember using guilt to control. “After all I have done for you, _____.”

I might as well have said, “You must keep your body here and use it to give me what I think I need from you. I will use you until I use you up and then I will trade you for a different body.” If that is not an attack I don’t know what is. Then my attacks became less frequent and more subtle. An “idle” thought, “Where are you when I need you?” “If only you were here.” “I wish you were here.”

By valuing someone as a body, which means valuing that one as a separate individual who is prized above others for what he/she can give me, I am attempting to separate that one from the whole and thus from God. Now I begin to see the scope of the attack! This attack continues as long as I look at a body and say that one is mine or is necessary to my happiness, for a moment or for a life time.

What happens as my relationships have been transformed? I don’t have need of a special love object. I simply love, as I have said before. I love fully and completely without any perceived needs or demands interfering with communication (which is the flow of love).

Not needing a particular body is what is meant by there will be no bodies. Bodies are a limit we place on God’s Son. So, if I think I need a special body onto which I will place my love and receive love in return, then I am trying to limit love (communication). I am saying that love goes only as far as the body I am interested in, and no further. If that body leaves me or disappoints me it takes away love and I hate it for my loss, and so love becomes something fragile and shifting and undependable and therefore fearful.

There will come a time when we know this in our hearts and we will truly have no need for bodies at all and the illusion will end. In the meantime, I can come closer to unrestricted communication as I allow the Holy Spirit to purify my relationships. The less neediness I bring into the relationship, the freer the communication, the closer it is to real love.
I was thinking about Byron Katie talking about relationships. She said something like this. If her husband thinks he loves her he is having a happy dream about her. If he decides he is not happy with her anymore then he is having a bad dream about her. She said if he wanted to leave her, she would let him go because she loves him. (Not anywhere near her exact words, but the general idea is right.)

She doesn’t need a particular body to be her love object and so she is free to love that particular body and to enjoy love without fear of loss. It is a way I test my assertion of love. If my child were to hate me for something I said or did, would that affect my experience of the relationship with him or her? Would it affect my love? Would it devastate me? Would it feel like a loss? It is my ultimate test of how close I am to true communication (true and holy relationship) as opposed to separation and attack (special relationship).

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What Happens When I Oppose God with My Thoughts.

What happens when I oppose God with my thoughts. (Question from Pathways of Light course 904)

I thought of a few ways that I try to make real what is not real. These are times when I believe my story is actually happening now and that I must control it in some way. When that happens, I feel stressed because, really, what can I control? My ex-husband spent his life being financially responsible, saving, and investing so that he would have a pleasant retirement. Then there was a crash and he lost half of his retirement right before he retired.

Who plans to get cancer? Who thinks they can control their adult children? No one can control what Congress does or the decisions made by the president. No one can control whether we go to war or stay at peace. I can’t control whether or not I will get robbed. I have no control over whether I get a headache or if I will sleep well on any particular night.
The point is that I cannot control this life. The script is written and certain things are destined to happen within the story, but I am not in the story. In Lesson 168, Jesus says this about us.

“The mind can think it sleeps, but that is all. It cannot change what is its waking state. It cannot make a body, nor abide within a body. What is alien to the mind does not exist, because it has no source. For mind creates all things that are, and cannot give them attributes it lacks, nor change its own eternal, mindful state. It cannot make the physical. What seems to die is but the sign of mind asleep.”

How much clearer can it get? The mind cannot make a body, nor abide within a body. So this story is just that – a story, imagination, a hallucination, an illusion. If I cannot be a body or in a body, I am not in this story. I can only be dreaming it.
When I believe in my story, I become anxious and rightfully so. But when I realize that this is not reality and I am not actually living it, I can use the story to further my purpose. Instead of trying to think of some way to change the story, I can focus on the question, “What is it for?” I can use the story to undo the story. When I do this, I am stress-free. It is a much happier dream and as a lucid dreamer, I experience it without fear.

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Manual for Teachers, 7. Should Healing Be Repeated? P 2. 7-28-20

2 Whenever a teacher of God has tried to be a channel for healing he has succeeded. Should he be tempted to doubt this, he should not repeat his previous effort. That was already maximal, because the Holy Spirit so accepted it and so used it. Now the teacher of God has only one course to follow. He must use his reason to tell himself that he has given the problem to One Who cannot fail, and must recognize that his own uncertainty is not love but fear, and therefore hate. His position has thus become untenable, for he is offering hate to one to whom he offered love. This is impossible. Having offered love, only love can be received.

Here is a an entry from an earlier journal on the Manual for Teachers. I am leaving it because it is an excellent example of what Jesus is teaching here. It is also a good example of how I learned what it means to be a healer.
Jesus reiterates that an offer of healing is complete. If I doubt it has worked, there is no reason to repeat the healing, but rather, it is reason to return to my own healing. Doubt has arisen because I forgot Who it is that does the healing. I have forgotten that I am only the channel, through which healing occurs.

Still, it seems harsh to say that I am now offering hate rate than love, but if I think about it, I can see how this is true. If I think I have failed, this throws me into fear, and fear is hate. I have a friend with a chronic illness and I have prayed for his healing. There is little obvious sign that healing is taking place if I look at his body. When I begin to doubt that I did anything at all, I feel guilty as if it is my fault and I feel that if I were more worthy, the healing would occur.
In this frame of mind, I notice more ego thoughts creeping in. I have thoughts that it is really his fault. He is stubborn and doesn’t want to accept the healing. It’s his fault he got this way. If he had a better life style, he would never have gotten sick. If he were more worthy, had been on a spiritual path, or would get on one, he would do better.

I feel ashamed of these thoughts and recognize them for the attack that they are. I see that I feel like I must attack this good friend of mine, because I must defend myself against the guilt I feel when I look at him. I began with the loving thought that I know he is not his story, and I know that he is perfect because of who he is. I know that he is healed because that is God’s Will. Then when I did not see the proof of healing I expected, that love became hate. It is the ego way.

Sometimes the patient needs time to accept the healing so as not to create more fear in his mind. Perhaps there are still lessons he is learning from this situation. I cannot know what is best for this person. Holy Spirit please heal my mind of these false thoughts. My brother does not need my hate, and neither do I. I am happy to disregard appearances and place my full trust in You.

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