Mastery Through Love — Everything that you perceive is the self-concept. The stars, the body, the trees, the cosmos, it’s all your making. Enlightenment occurs through mastery of love and in order to return to love we must forgive all of these ideas of what we think we are. This talk is a great aid for understanding what the self-concept is and how we can regain the awareness of love’s presence.
Full Length Talks
The ego has set up many different kinds of self-concepts and roles to keep us trapped, including identification with family relationships and with the body. The only responsibility we have is for our state of mind, we are not responsible for people, animals, debt, etc. If we give ourselves over to the Holy Spirit and following His guidance, the Spirit will handle all of the needs we seem to have in miraculous ways while we unwind our mind back to God. All things will be used in this unwinding, including family relationships. “The whole purpose of life is to wake up from this dream of this world. The ego would have you believe that you exist in this world and you have to attain and achieve certain things in your lifetime. And all of education and learning is based on learning more, but everything in this world is backward and upside down. When you think you advance in this world you are really falling back. And when you think your life is completely falling apart, you are actually opening your heart. So actually, there are always miracles and there are always blessings. The ego invented linear time, and God only knows eternity. So, past and present and future are part of the trick.”
We are fearful, even of our thoughts, and we push our fearful judgmental thoughts out of our conscious awareness. But our thoughts don’t have power over us. In the safe environment of an “expression session” we let any feeling, anything that is hidden, come to light. With this practice we learn to allow all of our thoughts into awareness. None of our thoughts are actually true, and we can learn to overlook anything.
This recording took place at A Gift of Happiness Week-Long Retreat (David Hoffmeister and Frances Xu – Morning Session), Wilbetree House, Mudgee, Australia (November 5, 2016)
The way to receive the gift of happiness is to make a habit of living a Spirit-guided life. To do this we must recognize that the mind, not the body, is the decision maker. Our current perception shows us a fragmented world of fear and rage. So when confronted with a decision it is helpful for us to step back and ask “What is it for?” Then we can choose the Spirit’s purpose of forgiveness or undoing. We can choose to serve something bigger than our self. David and Frances continue on to tell enlightening parables about: opening to love, our one responsibility, Siddhartha and the movie, “Sully.”
Be willing to listen to and follow your Internal Teacher, the Holy Spirit, and you will be led as gently as if you were being carried down a quiet path in summer. Jesus, who was a devoted follower of the Holy Spirit, accepted the Atonement for himself and then became the leader in charge of the Atonement. He tells us, “if you will be a miracle worker for me, I will organize time and space for you.” That means you don’t have to do “this and that” first. If you are willing and ready, you are being called now.
The goal of spiritual practice is to be in the flow of presence, to be tuned in to Spirit. Here we learn to forgive all perceptions of suffering and lack we have placed upon the world. Decision-making becomes simple and easy with the Spirit. It only seems difficult when we attempt to run some aspects of our lives by ourselves. This is where all sense of struggle comes in. When we completely let go and let God, all struggling comes to an end. In its place we find happiness, joy and freedom.
A plan B is anything we have in mind for our future happiness while ignoring the present moment. We are fighting ourselves with these distractive plan Bs. To be happy we need to trust the present Love of God, to trust it so much that we give up the plan Bs. In no situation do we know our own best interests. Yet we think we do. We tend to first decide what we want and then ask Spirit for direction. Instead, by deciding not to decide, we can open ourselves to let Spirit decide for us. In this way we come to experience that all real pleasure comes from doing God’s will.
This world we see can seem very real, but, in fact, it is a dream. We may feel like we have many problems in this life such as money, relationships, jobs, family issues, addictions and all kinds of issues the ego wants us to believe we have. There is only one problem, and that is our perception. By changing our thought and belief system we can wake up from this dream world and change our perception to a happy dream. The ego would have us think that to escape the world as we see it is a very complex mission, whereas the Spirit would have us learn that it is very simple.
The Course goes far beyond an intellectual endeavor. It is a course in relinquishing every concept that we have ever held and opening to a deep trust that Spirit will guide and lead us. We can’t trust our past learning, our opinions, or our past experience, for these were made by the ego. Nor can we trust Newtonian empirical research, which is also an egoic projection based on the belief in an external world. Yet we can trust the Holy Spirit, Who will lovingly unwind our mind from every self-concept and limiting belief we ever held. By choosing to hear and follow His Voice alone, we will gradually awaken to Love’s Presence and be happy.
Every situation that we experience in the world is an opportunity to let go of the idea that we know what things mean. When we recognize that we have given everything we see the meaning it has for us, we can choose differently. Becoming still and receptive to the Holy Spirit’s way of seeing, rather than interpretations based on the belief in past learning, opens us to guidance in a very practical way.