First thought: Gratitude for Paul’s workshop.
(Anything you want to explore or talk about, please leave comment on this blog site or ask/share in Sunday School).
This next section focuses on guides, spirit guides, or as I like to put it, “We are not alone in the process of growth, healing, and evolution.”
I do not want to minimize the nature or the power of the “invisible” help that is continually available to us, at the same time, I hold the intention to keep this work as understandable as possible.
There continue to be times when I think of myself doing “baby steps” with this work—taking a few toddling, unsteady steps forward, then falling on my hooppy-doopy and getting back up again. (So any doubt or contradictions you see here are reflections of my own resistance and misunderstandings).
Many of us grew up with the concept of a guardian angel, a spiritual/non-physical being who was assigned to us at birth to help keep us safe. As a child we might have thought of that protection simply took the form physical safety, and I certainly don’t discount that piece, but I also feel the guidance and protection was far greater than the material. But for many of us as well, our guardian angels went the way of Santa Claus and the easter Bunny.
Well now we are being introduced to this truth again in an adult sort of way. Just to make it a little simpler, I would suggest we all open our minds to recall an event or two when we experienced ourselves as being directed or guided in such a way that we knew the experience was beyond our thinking/rational mind, and perhaps even more than our ordinary intuition might lead us.
I would imagine all of us, since we are working past our doubts., fears, etc., can recall such times and be grateful for them. Well, now we are opening the door to a deeper realization of the loving entities that are part of this whole growing and evolutionary process of becoming the truth of who we are.
I’t’s no secret as we read this first book (and the others) that what we call the guides are revealing truth, guidance and information in a deeper and more profound way than we might have experienced in the past. I presume that we are all feeling and/or resonating to a deeper frequency of truth that we might have before. I think that is why all of us are here. Whether we feel it, know it, want it, or hope that it is here, all of these sensations are manifestations of our participating in a higher level of truth than we have in the past.
I would encourage us not to get into the comparison trip. There is a big difference between how we want the truth to be revealed to us and how it is actually revealed.
What I want is still somewhat connected to my ego and the drama it craves; what I need and how it comes to me is beyond my human understanding.
We did a meditation which was partly outlined on p. 187—88, and I recalled a saying from ACIM, which I will attempt to quote as closely as I can. (I was not able to find it on the book) “The ego tells us that if we are to real ourselves as we truly are that others would run away in horror, whereas the truth is they would be overcome by the Light.”
Our last piece on Sunday left us with the conundrum of what the guides refer to as “disguises.”
I was reminded of Alan Watts beautiful metaphor that I am quoting in full here:
Myth, then, is the form in which I try to answer when children ask me those fundamental metaphysical questions which come so readily to their minds: "Where did the world come from?" "Why did God make the world?" "Where was I before I was born" "Where do people go when they die?" Again and again I have found that they seem to be satisfied with a simple and very ancient story, which goes something like this:
"There was never a time when the world began, because it goes round and round like a circle, and there is no place on a circle where it begins. Look at my watch, which tells the time; it goes round, and so the world repeats itself again and again. But just as the hour-hand of the watch goes up to twelve and down to six, so, too, there is day and night, waking and sleeping, living and dying, summer and winter. You can't have any one of these without the other, because you wouldn't be able know what black is unless you had seen it side-by side with white, or white unless side-by side with black.
"In the same Way, there.are times when the world is, and times when it isn’t, for if the world went on and on without rest for ever and ever, it would get horribly tired of itself. It comes and it goes. Now you see it; now you don't. So because it doesn't get tired of itself, it always comes back again after it disappears. It's like your breath: it goes in and out, in and out, and if you try to hold it in all the time you feel terrible. It's also like the game of hide-and seek, because it's always fun to find new ways of hiding, and to seek for someone who doesn't always hide in tile same place.
"God also likes to play hide-and-seek, but because there is nothing outside God, he has no one but himself to play with. But he gets over this difficulty by pretending that he is not himself. This is his way of hiding from himself, He pretends that he is you and I and all the people in the world, all the animals, all the plants, all the rocks, and all the stars. In this way he has strange and wonderful adventures, some of which are terible and frightening. But these are just like bad dreams, for when he wakes up they will disappear.
"Now when God plays hide and pretends that he is you and I, he does it so well that it takes him a long time to remember where and how he hid himself. But that's the whole fun of it—just what he wanted to do. He doesn't want to find himself too quickly, for that would spoil the game. That is why it is so difficult for you and me to find out we are God in disguise, pretending not to be himself. But when the game has gone on long enough, all of us will wake up, stop pretending, and remember that we are all one single Self—the God who is all that there is and who lives for ever and ever.
"Of course, you must remember that God isn't shaped like a person. People have skins and there is always something outside our skins. If there weren't, we wouldn't know the difference between what is inside and outside our bodies. But God has no skin and no shape because there isn't any outside to him. The inside and the outside of God are the same. And though I have been talking about God as 'he' and not 'she,' God isn't a man or a woman. I didn't say ‘it’ because we usually say ‘it’ for things that aren't alive.
"God is the Self of the world, but you can't see God for the same reason that, without a mirror, you can't see your own eyes, and you certainly can't bite your own teeth or look inside your head. Your self is that cleverly hidden because it is God hiding.
"You may ask why God sometimes hides in the form of horrible people, or pretends to be people who suffer great disease and pain. Remember, first, that he isn't really doing this to anyone but himself. Remember, too, that in almost all the stories you enjoy there have to be bad people as well as good people, for the thrill of the tale is to find out how the good people will get the better of the bad. It's the same as when we play cards. At the beginning of the game we shuffle them all into a mess which is like bad things in the
world, but the point of the game is to put the mess into good order, and the one who does it best is the winner. Then we shuffle the cards once more and play again, and so it goes with the world.” From Alan Watts The Book, The Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are p.10-14
and I would like to add that wonderful line from T.S. Eliot from The Four Quartets:
“We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.”