Useless Journies – ACIM Chapter 4

This morning I woke up with the question on my mind, \”If you have no one to tell about your running and no dopamine rewards, what would you do?\” In the silence, an honest answer is demanded.

If there is a thing as spirit, it must be brought forth and lived. I think it means giving up the things which are louder, the noise. Dopamine rewards are not spirit.

Then, I began chapter 4 (The Illusions of the Ego) of the Course in Miracles text. Here is paragraph 3 of the introduction: \”The journey to the cross should be the last “useless journey”; Do not dwell upon it, but dismiss it as accomplished. If you can accept it as your own last useless journey, you are also free to join my resurrection. Until you do so your life is indeed wasted. It merely re-enacts the separation, the loss of power, the futile attempts of the ego at reparation, and finally the crucifixion of the body, or death. Such repetitions are endless until they are voluntarily given up. Do not make the pathetic error of “clinging to the old rugged cross”; The only message of the crucifixion is that you can overcome the cross. Until then you are free to crucify yourself as often as you choose. This is not the Gospel I intended to offer you. We have another journey to undertake, and if you will read these lessons carefully they will help prepare you to undertake it.\”

This paragraph is counter to denominational Christianity. This is one of the reason I like A Course in Miracles: it is counter-cultural.

So, I gave up a major internet social site. This gave me time to contemplate. Before I had such great internet connections, I contemplated. I stood in the silence and endured its searching. I want to be spirit, not ego. Giving up the ego\’s accomplishments is to hard because it means giving up the dopamine rewards. Its not that I won\’t ever try to accomplish anything, but that I will do it in secret. Because if I say anything, the other person congratulates me and I get the dopamine reward.

So, if I give up the rewards, it is a detox experience. Changing the habits which seek out the rewards is difficult. Seeking the rewards is a survival mechanism. Having a secure and valued place in the tribe is necessary for survival according to the ancient brain mechanisms. Today, achieving something and being praised is the equivalent of bringing the tribe some food.

I want to walk away from this mode of living. Not because I am better, but because I seek something else. Renunciation. Downward mobility. Giving in secret…praying in secret…fasting in secret…losing this life….

An interesting picture was taken of me on a bridge in Corpus Christi. I see that I am a skinny version of my mother. Not the drunk fat cruel mother with whom which I lived, but the spark of energy which could play beautiful piano and did seek higher things, only to run into the alcohol addiction over and over. As  spark, I live:

So funny, see I am holding my sun glasses. This was taken before the sun came up; but the wind was so fiercely blowing sand, that I had to put my glasses on for protection.


1 Comment

  1. Anonymous says:

    I am going to steal the term you used: DETOX. I also loved the analogy that running a race and writing a report is now seen as the equivalent of bringing the \”tribe\” food. It is interesting just how distorted all of this has become because at one time, the person who did bring in the most meat was treated accordingly. Now, those who can talk the most about their hunting [training] and as a self appointed expert with authority but not actually accomplish much are held in the highest esteem. Can you imagine a time when the tribe would say to a hunter, this 200 pounds of meat was obtained by scaring the beast over a cliff whereas that 20 pounds brought by Ogg is much better because they hunted the \”right\” way.


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