Freezing Rain Fear

From the ACIM Text, 8.IX: \”Wrong perception is the wish that things be as they are not…All forms of sickness, even unto death, are physical expressions of the fear of awakening…The decision to wake is the reflection of the will to love, since all healing involves replacing fear with love.\”

I put the title on this blog, because a winter storm is on the way. Driving in bad weather is really stupid. Yet employers expect their show to go on, so off to work I\’ll go.

My long run yesterday (28 miles) on bumpy rock hard ice tired me out. Today, I got the core and free weights done first, then 2 hours on the ex-machines, then another 2 hour run on hills.

Running 6 hours is definitely hard on the legs, but some days harder than others. However, I learned that nothing replaces the pain of ultra-running. I\’ll still have to develope a brain which doesn\’t try to evaluate the pain. I also learned that even when I think I can\’t, I can if I just take one more step. The problem is, when is the next step too far?

LSD Saturday in Parkville

Luckily, I got home from my business trip at a reasonable time yesterday evening and even got in a workout. It is January in the mid-west. We are having a mid-winter thaw. Most of the snow is melted. I think I will try a long run today: jogging for hours.

I did my spiritual workout this morning. Yesterday\’s post included this line from 8.VIII of the text, \”You must have noticed an outstanding characteristic of every end that the ego has accepted as its own. When you have achieved it, it has not satisfied you. That is why the ego is forced to shift ceaselessly from one goal to another, so that you will continue to hope it can yet offer you something.\”

This line is why I don\’t either set running/racing goals or keep trying to do bigger and bigger challenges. Attaining such a goal is an ego decision and it only feels satisfied for a brief period before it wants more. On the other hand, I do achieve awesome race results when I let the Holy Spirit decide for me. I do the training and let go of the result. Or really, my focus is my desire for love-based thinking; and the Holy Spirit arranges for lessons in that.

I had a moment of love based thinking yesterday. I was sitting next to a young kid on the flight from Atlanta to KC. He seemed not to have been on an air plane before and was dressed in a typical young black stereotype. I helped him put his jacket up. I noticed during the flight he kept looking at his cell phone but I did not tell him to turn it off. As we got near landing he looked out the window and then turned to me with this marvelous look on his face and asked, \”Is that snow?\”

After landing, he got on his cell phone and talked to someone named \”Coach\” and gave a description of what he was wearing. I noticed he had on a Tiger sweat jacket. After hanging up, I asked him if he was going to Mizzou. He smiled proudly and said yes. I got all teared up like that was my own son. Even now, I teared up again. I am not separate from that young black kid who had never been out of Florida and was looking at going to college and playing football. I wished him luck.

Inside us, we have God\’s Majesty. So awesome to feel its power and magnificence. I can live in a world where all I see is this majesty. It manifests in a kid dreaming of football and a mature white lady with her career and running dreams. Its not the dream, but the spirit which is important.

So returning to the ACIM text, this morning I read this, \”When you lay the ego aside, it will be gone. The Holy Spirit’s Voice is as loud as your willingness to listen.\”

I keep learning to listen to the Holy Spirit. He is the Voice for God. He speaks quietly and second, after the ego\’s shouting and insistent urging.

Charleston Friday to Kansas City Friday

Is there really a problem with sitting in an airport?

I read this in A Course in Miracles 8.VIII this morning: \”Attitudes toward the body are attitudes toward attack. The ego\’s definitions of anything are childish, and are always based on what it believes the thing is for. This is because it is incapable of true generalizations, and equates what it sees with the function it ascribes to it. It does not equate it with what it is. To the ego the body is to attack with. Equating you with the body, it teaches that you are to attack with. The body, then, is not the source of its own health. The body\’s condition lies solely in your interpretation of its function. Functions are part of being since they arise from it, but the relationship is not reciprocal. The whole does define the part, but the part does not define the whole. Yet to know in part is to know entirely because of the fundamental difference between knowledge and perception. In perception the whole is built up of parts that can separate and reassemble in different constellations. But knowledge never changes, so its constellation is permanent. The idea of part-whole relationships has meaning only at the level of perception, where change is possible. Otherwise, there is no difference between the part and whole.

The body exists in a world that seems to contain two voices fighting for its possession. In this perceived constellation the body is seen as capable of shifting its allegiance from one to the other, making the concepts of both health and sickness meaningful. The ego makes a fundamental confusion between means and end as it always does. Regarding the body as an end, the ego has no real use for it because it is not an end. You must have noticed an outstanding characteristic of every end that the ego has accepted as its own. When you have achieved it, it has not satisfied you. This is why the ego is forced to shift ceaselessly from one goal to another, so that you will continue to hope it can yet offer you something.\”

Charleston Thursday – Off the Hook

Methylisocyanate. There, I said it. Phosgene. Thats the other bad word. I\’ve been wearing a phosgene badge all week, and arguing with people about what is acceptable for startup of the MIC unit.

I mentioned this morning how I\’ve had a relationship issue on my mind. Since Sunday, I\’ve had this low grade spiritual sickness of fear and guilt. This sort of mental problem is exactly what A Course in Miracles is good at. I\’d say that without the Course, I\’d be a flaming mess. And I am not a Course failure just because I am not perfect yet. I am a learner, and still dealing with blockages to the learning goal.

This evening, after skipping dinner and going to the hotel gym, I sat down and glanced at the Text 8.VII. My eyes brushed the most astounding paragraph: \”Do not allow yourself to suffer from imagined results of what is not true. Free your mind from the belief that this is possible. In its complete impossibility lies your only hope for release. But what other hope would you want? Freedom from illusions lies only in not believing them. There is no attack, but there is unlimited communication and therefore unlimited power and wholeness. The power of wholeness is extension. Do not arrest your thought in this world, and you will open your mind to creation in God.\”

The bolded part is what touched me. I remembered truth: this world is an illusion and it can\’t hurt me. It is impossible for me to be guilty because I haven\’t done anything (and neither have you). And, I get to freedom in God by thinking beyond this world (talk about thinking outside the box, eee gads).

Thursday in Charleston – Spiritual Workout

It helps me to remember my litany:

Father in Jesus\’ name remind me of
Your love for me and of my love for You.

If I am afraid I am deceived.
I am spirit. Know this need not be.
Fear is lack of love. Atonement heals.
Expanding love is my reality.
I am not alone. Jesus is here.
Jesus is the undoing of the dream.
The Holy Spirit is the choice for God.
I hear Him speak quietly in my mind.

In the holy instant I forgive.
Miracles come forth as love expressed.
Giving and receiving are the same.
Full appreciation is my gift.
The innocent see perfection truly.
Christ vision is their one and only sight.
My mind holds only light and shines is out.
I see God\’s majesty in all others.

God is not symbolic. He is fact.
His peace cannot be shaken. I am free.
Into His hands I commend my spirit.
And so my mind awakens to His peace.

Truth is my commitment. I am joy.
Love is my intention so I bless.
Love based thinking is my one desire.
Inner peace is what I really want.

Much of this is not understood unless someone has studied A Course in Miracles. But anyone can understand the relief and happiness available to the person who has relinquished all to God and wants only love based thoughts. Truly we have escaped from the ego world if we change our thoughts to the Holy Spirit\’s thought system.

The mind can be used to think beyond the body. If the mind stops at the body, it is blocked. Removing the blocks is what spiritual practices are for.

From 8.VII: \”To communicate is to join and to attack is to separate. How can you do both simultaneously with the same thing and not suffer? Perception of the body can be unified only by one purpose. This releases the mind from the temptation to see the body in many lights, and gives it over entirely to the One Light in Which it can be really understood…Learning must lead beyond the body to the re-establishment of the power of the mind in it.\”

I did my spiritual workout this morning. I have been taking a break from running and serious training. I\’ve decided it is good to have a mid-winter break for physical rejuvenation.

The Body as a Means of Communication – Charleston Wednesday Eve

It is probably like a TV show: 8 members of the audit team in a meeting room with at least that many auditee representatives. We are discussing audit findings late into the evening. Not everyone keeps their temper.

I appear calm and I am. I am doing my part facilitating discussions and clarifying results.I actually have outside issues which are bothering me. It is because of my emotions that I need this Course.

But so often, Course students are discouraged, wondering when they will be perfect enough to never make any errors in their relationships, never get angry or be afraid. But of course, we wouldn\’t need the Course if we never made an error. It is the ego that wants perfection.

Jesus says, \”Whenever the reaction to learning is depression, it is because the true goal of the curriculum has been lost sight of.\” Guided by the Holy Spirit, the body can become a means to return to the consciousness of spirit. Devotion to God can replace devotion to the ego. The Voice for God, the Holy Spirit, abides in it and directs the use to which it is put.

I am happy if I don\’t judge the use to which the Holy Spirit directs me.

The Treasure of God – Charleston Wednesday

When I am out of town, I usually need to sleep more; especially if surrounded by colleagues all day. Our work as an audit team for the startup up of a highly hazardous unit has been productive so far. Yesterday evening, I did have a great workout in the hotel. I think a few days off from running is a good idea also.

Big plug for the TRX exercise system. You can get a great hotel room workout with that.

The treasure of God is His Son. Not just Jesus; but we, all of us, are the one Son. Jesus is devoted, even today, to helping us realize how holy and beloved we, the Son, are. It is me that doesn\’t understand this. We are God\’s being; not separate. But we are not bodies. God is thought and we are thought. \”The journey to God is merely the reawakening of the knowledge of where you are always and what you are forever. It is a journey without distance…\”

Now I move to the next section: 8.VII – The Body as a Means of Communication

This part talks about using the body to attack instead of communicate. I wonder if I will ever reach a state of inner peace so calm that I do not attack others (either verbally or in thought). So I need the Holy Spirit and here is the core of his help: \”To communicate with part of God Himself is to reach beyond the Kingdom to its Creator, through His Voice (the Holy Spirit) Which He has established as part of you.\”

I really want God and inner peace, so I keep working on this.

\”…you can perfectly accomplish His holy Will for you when you accept it for yourself.\”

\”Thought cannot be made flesh except by belief, since thought is not physical. Yet thought is for communication, for which the body can be used.\” And so in my rudimentary way, I control my thoughts and use them for communication/prayer, by repeating my litany.

The Treasure of God – Charleston Tuesday

Ultra Monk\’s Log – On the road in Charleston

The spiritual workout happens. That impresses me. I slept in today and didn\’t work out before work. This afternoon I had a creative hotel workout in Charleston, WV. But the spiritual workout did happen this morning.

The title of this blog is related to the chapter I am reading in A Course in Miracles text (8.VI).

\”Forget not the Kingdom of God for anything the world has to offer.\” And suddenly I find myself off the hook for a mistake I made relating to another person. Apologies and hopes for pardon from that other person aside, Atonement reminds me that it only happened in my dream of this world. In the Kingdom, I am at peace. So I sit quietly and let Jesus assure me I am free in God. I shift my identification, existence and consciousness towards the Kingdom. Running and endorphins aside, I live in peace by the power of the Kingdom.

\”You cannot behold the world and know God. Only one is true.\”

\”No one created by God can find joy in anything except the eternal….because nothing else is worthy of him.\” I make mistakes here in my illusion. I can think I am guilty; but if I do, I\’ve listened to the ego and not the Holy Spirit. \”Case dismissed,\” is what the Holy Spirit says. No one can be guilty for a dream.

My Sick Mind

Today, as usual, I went running. I wanted to run on the levy; thinking I could run where there wasn\’t much snow and more or less zone out for a few hours. But I found that the wind had blown foot tall drifts every 4 or 5 feet. Crunching through drifts is hard work and tedious running. After 2h15, I abruptly became disinterested and headed for the car, finishing my workout on the ex-machines.

After 40 min on the treadmill and 28 min on the nordic track, I had a startling relevation about the series of thoughts which had been in my mind. I was even astounded to see that this entire years of blogs is intent on one thing: selling you on the idea that I am spiritual, loved by God, and living a very interesting and worthwhile life while your life is stupid, unconscious and worldly.

It feels good to realize how sick my thinking is. and Jesus gives me a way out. If I admit the truth, he shines away the darkness with his light. Truly, I don\’t want to leave such insidious egotism festering in my sub-conscious.

In chapter 8 of A Course in Miracles text. Jesus makes some astounding offerings. Do I want what he offers? Jesus practically begs us to join him.

  • \”I am come as a light into a world that does deny itself everything…
  • I said that I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. That is why I am the light of the world. If I am with you in the loneliness of the world, the loneliness is gone…
  • If my light goes with you everywhere, you shine it away with me…
  • If you will accept the fact that I am with you, you are denying the world and accepting God…
  • My will is His, and your decision to hear me is the decision to hear His Voice and abide in His Will…
  • If you want to be like me I will help you, knowing that we are alike. If you want to be different, I will wait until you change your mind…
  • I can teach you, but only you can choose to listen to my teaching…
  • I will always remember you, and in my remembrance of you lies your remembrance of yourself. In our remembrance of each other lies our remembrance of God…
  • Let the Love of God shine upon you by your acceptance of me…
  • By joining your mind with mine you are signifying your awareness that the Will of God is one…
  • To join with me is to restore His power to you because we are sharing it. I offer you only the recognition of His power in you, but in that lies all truth…
  • When you unite with me you are uniting without the ego, because I have renounced the ego in myself …
  • Our union is therefore the way to renounce the ego in you. The truth in both of us is beyond the ego…
  • I go before you because I am beyond the ego. Reach, therefore, for my hand because you want to transcend the ego…
  • My strength will never be wanting, and if you choose to share it you will do so. I give it willingly and gladly…

The Mystery of Ultra-running

I am always trying to figure out why I want to run 50 miles.

So I say, \”If I had no one to tell that I did this, why would I do it?\” I mention taking other people out of the equation because that is where my ego becomes involved. In my opinion, running ultras for the purpose of saying you ran an ultra feels good to the ego, but may not be serving spirit.

I think it is spirit which drives the training process.

Last night, Friday night, I worked out in my home gym for 4 hours. This workout had the effect of tiring out my legs. Then today, I jogged for 4h38 min up and down hills. I was tired as I got started; but no running injuries. Mentally, I was thinking I would have to quit. I didn\’t think I could make myself do those hills for very long. I kept thinking of ways to get away from the hills. But the flatter roads had too much traffic and the sidewalks are snow covered. So I stayed on the hills where I could run on the roads but only face a little residential traffic.

It was a good time to wonder why I want to run ultras. Mentally, I stared at the blankness I got for an answer. But now later, I thought, \”I run to the furthest reaches on my physical capability, a fringe world along the edge of a mental and physical cliff, where I gaze into the infinite abyss of non-reality.\” Then, I come home, re-group and do the same thing in my meditation. There is not much physical challenge to sitting still with eyes closed. There is the mental exercise of staying focused inward, continuing the gaze into infinity.

I don\’t have to exist in either of these conditions. The world around me disappears; losing its meaning before something greater. I return to the primordial where I have no resentments, fears, desires.

My ultra running is not really about belt buckles. My marathons are not about Boston Qualification or age group awards. Those things are not even icing on the cake. They are distractions from the Real. The spiritual is the Real.

I want to experience the Real. I want to exist in Real consciousness. For this reason, I continue my quest for knowing God in THIS lifetime.