Prayer Litany – Revised Again

Most people think Christmas is real. I do not. I see it as a human construction that really means nothing in the world of spirit. Genuine love does not increase during this season of gift giving.

But, Christmas occupies many people\’s time and so the park was very empty today. I got to run for almost 4 hours; about two hours were in a heavy snowfall. The snow makes it seem more quiet. And strangely enough, a man I have know for decades caught up to me on my last two laps and decided to slow to my pace and chat.

While I was alone, I pondered what I read in the Course in Miracles text this morning (6.V.B): \”What you must recognize is that when you do not share a thought system, you are weakening it. Those who believe in it therefore perceive this as an attack on them. \”

To not participate in Christmas is a threat to many people and they respond to me with an attack. The attack often takes the form of calling me a Scrooge, so maybe I will feel guilty and get with the Christmas game. I realize that the attack is a result of my threatening their ego\’s thought system. The response I learned from A Course in Miracles is to realize the attack is a call for love.

This morning, as I thought about Christmas thought attacks, I realized that stuff like Christmas is invented to distract us from our pain. Most humans live in a very deep pain and don\’t want to look at it. The pain is related to the presumed separation from God which is lived out in the ego\’s thought system. The ego\’s thought system is very painful. So to give love in response to the call for love, I remember the Holy Spirit\’s thought system; and remember that we are one in God. The painful ego world does not really exist.

This line of thinking caused me to go very deeply into my litany (see below); especially the part about giving and receiving are the same. In the park, there is an old guy who can\’t really stand up straight, but runs very well. I waved at him and got a \”hey\” in response. That was my connection to the Christ in him. We both gave and received equally. The fact that Steve spent an hour running with me was an awesome expression of love. Then I went to the store and an assistant manager insisted on giving me a dollar off an item because they were out of the smaller size package. That was also giving and receiving for both of us. The money didn\’t matter; it was the connection. We both got love.

Christmas gift giving is more often an attack than love. And I believe what Jesus says in Miracle Principle number 5: \”Miracles are habits, and should be involuntary. They should not be under conscious control. Consciously selected miracles can be misguided.\” And number 32: \”I (Jesus) inspire all miracles, which are really intercessions. They intercede for your holiness and make your perceptions holy. By placing you beyond the physical laws they raise you into the sphere of celestial order. In this order you are perfect.\”

Its not that Christmas does not involve miracles because each of us is a miracle and all expressions of love are miracles. Real miracles are natural and under the guidance of Jesus. They happen all the time, not just at Christmas. What happens at Christmas is ego satisfaction. And my point is that I have withdrawn my support of the ego\’s thought system, hence threaten other people\’s egos, hence get accused of being a Scrooge, hence see pain, hence overlook the pain and see perfect innocence and Christ instead. Thus, we both have inner peace.

Which brings us to Miracle Principle 25: \”Miracles are part of an interlocking chain of forgiveness (overlooking) which, when completed, is the Atonement (undoing). \” My way of undoing the ego and returning to God is the above process.

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 my choice for God.
I hear Him speak quietly in my mind.

Giving and receiving are the same.
True appreciation is my gift.
The innocent see perfection truly.
Christ Vision is their one and only sight.

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

This is my commitment and the truth.
Love is my intention as of now.
Love based thinking is my one desire.
Inner peace is what I really want. (Amen)


In the World but not of it

In my morning meditation today, I read from ACIM 27.III:

  • An empty space that is not seen as filled, an unused interval of time not seen as spent and fully occupied, become a silent invitation to the truth to enter, and to make itself at home. No preparation can be made that would enhance the invitation’s real appeal. For what you leave as vacant God will fill, and where He is there must the truth abide.
  • Reality is ultimately known without a form, unpictured and unseen.
  • In quietness are all things answered, and is every problem quietly resolved.
  • …in your state of mind, solution is impossible. Therefore, God must have given you a way of reaching to another state of mind in which the answer is already there. Such is the holy instant. It is here that all your problems should be brought and left.
  • Attempt to solve no problems but within the holy instant’s surety.

Today I ran 1:50 along the levy. It was a driving freezing rain that was painful at first. Going out, one side of my face was frozen. Coming back, the other side was frozen. I peed under the interstate. The Gortex did its job. I did this run because, well whenever I have time, I go running. I\’m not particularly tapering for a marathon on Sunday because, well, with snow on the way I\’ll likely walk on the treadmill tomorrow; and I don\’t even know if I\’ll feel like the three hour drive to get to the marathon.

The guy with the book was out there too. This man trudges along reading a book and not looking up at all. Today, he was trudging through the grass on the leeward side, away from the wind, with an umbrella. His blue jeans were sopping up the rain. I don\’t think he saw me up on the levy, but his dog came and said hi.

I saw a heard of wild turkeys, a couple of cardinals and some other small birds.

I see Christmas all around me but am not angry at it. I have cut ties with the reality of the illusion if I can watch the illusion but not be involved with it. This ambivalence is to be in the world but not of it.

I know some thoughtful people who don\’t want to do Christmas but do it because of pressure from others; blaming children or parents for their involvement. Peer pressure justifies gang rape too! Others feel like they must give, so they go work at the soup kitchen. Others feel like it is terrible for anyone to be alone and offer loners a place at their table. Others feel the religious necessity of celebrating Jesus\’ birthday, a holy day of obligation as well. Some loners gather together anyway unable to stand the idea of being alone on Christmas.

I have 5 days in a row off work. Time to be in solitude and silence.

So I have broken free of the ties of peer pressure. It puts me in a vacuum outside the world. I have time and space to listen to the inner Voice. The vacuum is a void where a spiritual reality can flood in to my awareness (even if it is not Christmas this happens). The spiritual reality is quiet. It has no definition related to the material world. It is a place I know, where I exist as an abstraction.

Sitting in my apartment watching the thoughts float through my mind is no different than going out into the world and watching what is going on with other people. Neither the thoughts in my mind nor the world I seem to see around me are real. The spiritual reality, which is real, is eneffable, undefined, abstract, ungrasped, unperceived; yet known. The inner Voice does not speak in words. I invest less of my belief in the material world, thus letting go of judgment, fear, anger, hate and self centeredness. I invest more of my belief in the world of undefined being, existence without limit or terms.

It is somewhat difficult to keep the attention focused on the spiritual world. To be in solitude focused on the spiritual world is the lingering gift of monastic life. Physically divorced from ordinary life while in the cloister, I was never able to return to normal life exactly. I continued my spiritual quest into the Great Beyond, where nothing said in words makes sense.

The Wednesday Before Christmas

This morning at Mass, Jesus already had on his Christmas colors.

This morning I got up a little early, 3:30. I did my spiritual study which left me empty, no real inspiring thoughts. If I am terriby peaceful and quiet, I recognize emptiness as peace. But this seems to require some spiritual skill and awareness; otherwise we just think God wasn\’t there and go on with our worldy life. ACIM text 26.II:

  • This is your brother, focus of your hate, unworthy to be part of you and thus outside yourself…The Holy Spirit knows your healing is the witness unto his, and cannot be apart from his at all.
  • Let yourself be healed that you may be forgiving, offering salvation to your brother and yourself.
  • Forgiveness is not real unless it brings a healing to your brother and yourself. You must attest his sins have no effect on you to demonstrate they are not real….that his guilt is but the fabric of a senseless dream.

Reading carefully, you see what tied my ego brain in knots but seems not to bother my innocent mind: what is said seems contradictory unles you can think non-linear. \”…be healed that you may be forgiving…\” \”Forgiveness is not real unless it brings healing…\” It includes my ego\’s usual sticking point: how can I look out of my head and not see sin? But at the moment, I am at peace with the circular nature of healing and forgiveness as well as the fact that it is the Holy Spirit who looks out of my head and sees innocence. My job is to let Him: both heal and see innocence. Hence is forgiveness accomplished.

Then I went for an hour long run on the hills in the rain. I had on my gortex, temps at 34F and no wind. It was a run worth taking. An hour long run doesn\’t tire the legs at all but does make some endorphins, shuffle the blood around, air out the lungs and freshen the mind.

Then, I zipped up to Mass. They had taken down the Advent colors and put up the Christmas decorations. I wonder why, year after year, the tacky cardboard angels keep showing up on an otherwise very sophisticated layout.

Now, I am at work. The plan is to go to lunch at 11:30 today and not come back until Tuesday. I have no Christmas plans. This year, I won\’t even claim that I will practice contemplation while the rest of the world eats and opens gifts. If I am contemplative at all, it will be in mindlessness as I practice my zen-like core routine. I\’ll do some running, reading, writing and sleeping. I\’ll watch the snow come down and then get out my yak-traks for a snowy run. I\’ll lay low and not interfere with anyone else\’s perception of peace on earth.

et en terra, terra pax…


If I accept The Atonement in my heart then there is no need to fear God, everything I think I did has been undone or never was, then I can drop the hate and step into HIS embrace.

The ACIM story behind fear of God mirrors the creation story but is more about the abstract content. There was a tiny mad idea that asked God for specialness. God doesn\’t know specialness so didn\’t give it. The tiny mad idea got mad at God and left heaven; instead trying to make a world where it could be special. Mad at God, the tiny idea feared God and began to hate HIM. The tiny mad idea became afraid of God for its leaving heaven because it thought it took God\’s power. But in the instant the tiny mad idea thought it left, God undid the thought so the mad idea actually never did anything. This world it thought it made is but a dream. Being a dream made by a guilty fearful mad idea who was filled with hate for itself and the misery it made (no wonder that is how I feel deep down inside).

Really really really, proven by science, thoughts create reality and what I see is what I thought.

But if I accept Atonement for myself, my hate, fear and guilt vanish. I go to live in innocence within God\’s embrace. I no longer invest this world with reality but ambivalently watch it as a dream, forever seeing the true innocence behind the dream.

The sticking point is continuing to think I see the world and think it is real. The Holy Spirit helps (following from ACIM text 27.I):

  • Now in the hands made gentle by His touch, the Holy Spirit lays a picture of a different you. It is a picture of a body still, for what you really are cannot be seen nor pictured. Yet this one has not been used for purpose of attack, and therefore never suffered pain at all. It witnesses to the eternal truth that you cannot be hurt, and points beyond itself to both your innocence and his. Show this unto your brother, who will see that every scar is healed, and every tear is wiped away in laughter and in love. And he will look on his forgiveness there, and with healed eyes will look beyond it to the innocence that he beholds in you.
  • The Holy Spirit’s picture changes not the body into something it is not. It only takes away from it all signs of accusation and of blamefulness.
  • Into this empty space, from which the goal of sin has been removed, is Heaven free to be remembered. Here its peace can come, and perfect healing take the place of death.
  • The Holy Spirit offers you, to give to him, a picture of yourself in which there is no pain and no reproach at all. And what was martyred to his guilt becomes the perfect witness to his innocence.

We all seek a way out of here. And God has given everyone a way out. All the ways involve an end of attack on others, an end of the fear of God and an acceptance of God\’s unconditional love for us. Having accepted Atonement, we simply step into the embrace and nothing else matters.

If the baby in the manger means anything, it is a symbol of our true innocence; which resides in each one of use. Innocence is our true content and the forms we think we see are delusions made of the fear of God.

The Laws of Healing

I got this picture out of \”Spirit and Life\” yesterday; the magazine published by the Benedictine Sisters of Perpetual Adoration where I lived for 4 years. The picture is a mosaic from their chapel. It surprised me today. I can see in it a need for me to have re-birth, a new life; and all the powers of heaven rejoicing in my willingness to accept God’s gift. I am astounded at this idea because it is the first good one I\’ve had about Christmas so far this year.

This idea is a light in my darkness as I looked at my negative thinking this morning.

I can\’t believe I was a nun for 4 years. I cannot really believe I am Roman Catholic and attend Mass frequently. Before I went to the convent, I spent decades trying to find a husband but never connected. It still amazes me because the lack of a husband has in so many ways changed my life\’s course, freeing me from the misery I would have been as a drunken wife, following in the miserable footsteps of my drunken mother. I can\’t believe I was an alcoholic 24 years ago. It amazes me I am still a long distance runner and engineer.

My life has been all over the map. The outward images seem disconnected. Running and engineering and my search for God are the common threads. Spirituality is an exercise in ego transcendence. Whatever happens in my life seems tied to ego deflation and the emergence of my spiritual self.

I am attempting to make heads or tails of the “Laws of Healing” (below). I struggle with solitude vs my place in the 12 Step Fellowship and the Church. I think I should go to meetings; yet despite my spiritual work, the meetings upset me and I leave with my ego hysterically hammering me. So I quit going to meetings and I feel much better; but I now feel like I’ve failed ACIM forgiveness. 12 Step meetings for me have taken a place as a spiritual exercise of ACIM forgiveness; they are not for the purpose of recovery or helping others. No wonder they are such a disaster for my ego. I am using them as a mirror and what I see is my own projected hate. I approach them as I would any difficult undertaking: with trepidation and the knowledge that I’m about to have a painful lesson. On the side of Church attendance, I quit going to the big Sunday Masses and attend the quiet weekday Masses because I leave without the ego hammering.

My prayer this morning is for further guidance from my COMPANION. God cannot fail in His purpose so I am assured of healing. I must accept the healing found in the practice of forgiveness. I know my ego is obstinate about this whole issue; but surprisingly, I am getting better. I am far less hateful, fearful and angry than I used to be. I have more inner peace despite the periodic encounters with ego hammering.

The Laws of Healing, excerpted (ACIM text chapter 26.VII):

Forgiveness is the only function here, and serves to bring the joy this world denies to every aspect of God’s Son where sin was thought to rule… Forgiveness takes away what stands between your brother and yourself. It is the wish that you be joined with him, and not apart… What is forgiveness but a willingness that truth be true?… Forgiveness is the answer to attack of any kind. So is attack deprived of its effects, and hate is answered in the name of love.

Salvation, perfect and complete, asks but a little wish that what is true be true; a little willingness to overlook what is not there; a little sigh that speaks for Heaven as a preference to this world that death and desolation seem to rule.

All sickness comes from separation. When the separation is denied, it goes…

Guilt asks for punishment, and its request is granted.

Perception’s laws are opposite to truth, and what is true of knowledge is not true of anything that is apart from it…. What is projected out, and seems to be external to the mind, is not outside at all, but an effect of what is in, and has not left its source…Perception’s laws must be reversed, because they are reversals of the laws of truth.

Cause and effect are one, not separate. God wills you learn what always has been true: That He created you as part of Him, and this must still be true because ideas leave not their source.

The miracle is possible when cause and consequence are brought together, not kept separate…God gave to all illusions that were made another purpose that would justify a miracle whatever form they took. In every miracle all healing lies, for God gave answer to them all as one… The miracle but calls your ancient name, which you will recognize because the truth is in your memory. And to this name your brother calls for his release and yours… Your ancient name belongs to everyone, as theirs to you. Call on your brother’s name and God will answer, for on Him you call.

To use the power God has given you as He would have it used is natural… The gift of God to you is limitless. There is no circumstance it cannot answer, and no problem which is not resolved within its gracious light.

Abide in peace, where God would have you be. And be the means whereby your brother finds the peace in which your wishes are fulfilled…. to bless but one gives blessing to them all as one.

Awesome Freedom

I am wrapping up my Christmas holiday with an elated state of mind; almost as if I had just crossed the finish line of a marathon. I spent Christmas breaking the Christmas rules. I even broke the Christian rules. I did not do what you are supposed to do. As I constantly kept returning my mind to the Light, time passed and I came to a new realization. Christmas is not real. All it is is a set of ego rules. If it was real, I\’m sure the Holy Spirit or Jesus would have mentioned it. But, all I see in Christmas is ego rules for what you \”should\” do; and if you don\’t follow the rules, your ego screams. My ego told me how I better be terrified if anyone finds out I broke the rules; there could be repercussions for non-believers.

So… I laughed. My ego is the tiny mad idea. As a Son of God, I remembered to laugh. I remembered to look beyond this world and use Christ vision to see only Light. I am sinless. I am not guilty. No one is guilty. All are sinless. We are in God; always safe and always at peace. Christmas is just an ego dream, an illusion; not real. Peace is real.

My Gift

The greatest gift I have to give all humanity this Christmas is to sit before The Father of Light, receive His Peace and project His Peace. Everyone will be touched in some way by His Peace.

I am in your heart and you are in mine. There is nothing greater than this Great Love which truely exists. This Reality is Heaven. The experience of it is the most magnificent thing possible.

I kneel before you and hold out His Peace.