David Hoffmeister clarifies the distinction between “error” and “sin.” Error is a mistake that is correctible, but sin is a belief that there is something dark and devious that is stronger than Love. This is a crazy idea! David shares how our only function is acceptance the correction—the grace is already there! So, how does one practically experience this truth? By giving one’s mind over to Spirit, we open to the joy of true service.
Living in Community
Joining in Spiritual Community
Feelings of aloneness are frequent on the spiritual journey and the desire arises to have an experience of connectedness. As we go deeper spiritually, we recognize the importance of joining with others in a single purpose.
Autonomy is a more subtle form of specialness. God creates and creation is extension. Spirit creates Spirit. This is what Jesus calls true autonomy. What counts as autonomy in this world is independence, which is a false sense of autonomy. The spiritual path leads to the realization that “I Am-ness” is so more vast than we can imagine. There are many praises of autonomy in Western culture and great fear can arise around the idea of losing personal independence. However, both personal identity and collective identity are false constructs. Complete God-dependence is a feeling of trust and being completely taken care of without any risk.
A spiritual community can be a “celestial speed-up” for Self-realization; an intense mirroring of all your thoughts and behaviors. Projecting or denying your feelings will not release them. We must face our emotions directly; we are 100% responsible for our state of mind. We are not at the mercy of others in this world, nor of the world itself. We cannot do this alone, so we join with our mighty companions to help flush up the negative thoughts and to see they are not real. Let your thoughts and emotions come up, give them full expression, and then ask the Holy Spirit to handle them for you.
Playful Collaborative Mind
We live in community at a Monastery in Utah; it is not like what you may think, however. It is very spontaneous and we follow only two guidelines: No People-Pleasing and No Private Thoughts. In this honesty, we allow our resistances to come up and be released. This stops us from taking things so seriously and we become more creative, playful. The creative impulse born out of this is the “miracle-mind,” and miracles are collaborative.
There’s a strain and internal conflict in the mind when you try to live up to people’s standards. Beyond pleasing the people around you, there is a people-pleasing the “people” that you believe you are. The conflict comes from trying to meet the standard of the ideal person you believe you should be. You cannot simply change the form of your behavior when psychologically and emotionally you have not reached that point of change. Instead, be spontaneous and authentic until you have purification of mind, where everything comes together into integrity. David shares about his own experiences releasing emotions, mourning, and facing the darkness. When joining with others, whether it is a community of two or a larger group, there is more temptation for ego sabotage and flare-ups; and along with that, an opportunity for much deeper healing.
Using “A Course in Miracles” in relationships as a mind training program dissolves the unconscious mind. Ultimately, one is left with a complete awareness of what is in the mind and how to forgive what opposes Peace. When “A Course in Miracles” is practiced in a community setting, there is a great speed-up in this unconscious dissolving. To have a relationship in community coupled with the openness of communal living is a recipe for a lightning-fast directness. Happy Awakening!
Relationships Mirror Unconscious Beliefs
David Hoffmeister describes the way to forgive relationships by seeing the value that people offer as mirrors of unconscious beliefs. Through relationships and spiritual community you recognize the “fast track” to enlightenment. The ego is undone when it no longer holds any value or attraction, and forgiveness lights the way.
Working with a Spiritual Teacher
When you invite a spiritual teacher to work with you, as Dan invites Socrates in the movie Peaceful Warrior, your experience can be more intense and bring up resistance. But exposing at that accelerated rate leads to transformation.