The problem with being human is that everything seems to be personal when it is not.
Suffering is the result of the personal self interpreting things in terms of itself: if it benefits “me”, it’s good; if it doesn’t benefit “me” it’s bad.
To the non-locatable Self, nothing is wrong; everything is as it is– no problem. Thoughts are just thoughts. Feelings are just feelings. Sensations are just sensations. They don’t belong to anyone. They are simply present without the interpreting mechanisms of the separate self. Just as the sky would not complain about clouds that appear in it, the Self cannot personalize nor object to what is still part of itself.
Miracles gradually shift our awareness from the body, that locatable, personal sense of a “me”, to spirit, that impersonal awareness that is Self. It is a gradual process so as not to arouse too much fear in the ego, causing it to turn suspicious and vicious. We are told early on in the text of A Course in Miracles that we will not be “hurled into reality.”
“Miracles transcend the body. They are sudden shifts into invisibility, away from the bodily level. That is why they heal.” – Miracle principle 17.
The belief that it is a sacrifice to give up the personal is based upon the belief that the personal actually exists. In fact, personhood is a mind-constructed fabrication of a separate self in relationship with other separate selves. Nothing could be further from the truth. Nothing is given up; there is only an illusion of giving up. The personal self never existed.
In writing about this I hope that some of the resistance to engaging in the lessons of the Course will be recognized, understood, and not made a big deal of. Perhaps you might even welcome the shift from the personal reference point to an all-encompassing awareness of what is. Instead of either pathologizing this shift or making it a special experience that belongs to a “someone” you may see this as natural, effortless, and available equally to everyone. This could be very helpful.
Relationships for a non-personal purpose are particularly confounding to the ego to which everything is “useful” for the purpose of validating the existence of personhood. “Me”, “I”, and “mine” make total sense to it. From the point of view of a separate self, love is the fulfillment of a longing to merge with another separate self.
Intimacy is the natural state of all relationships when the sense of a personal self is no longer believed. The non-locatable, impersonal Self recognizes itself everywhere in everything. Every encounter is a meeting with one Self directly, without any of the interference of personal interpretation. This is intimacy. It is devoid of the specialness that a personal point of view gives to everything.
To discover that joy and love are not personal and never did belong to someone is an extraordinarily liberating awareness. There is nothing to be gotten from anyone. Everything we could ever hope to find is already available. Clinging to our self-constructed sense of separateness that perceives through the body’s senses is all that keeps us from freedom. We cling because, in believing what we have made of ourselves, we also believe it would be a huge sacrifice to give it up. Again, nothing is given up. It is all smoke and mirrors.
Usually a question arises about being able to function without having a personal point of reference. The ego tells us that we will run amuck without its “guidance”. Nothing could be further from the truth. Life continues just as before only awareness of life is not through the sense organs of the body including the brain which interprets everything in a personal way.
Awareness is non-locatable and impersonal. It is. Everything gets done, only without the sense of a personal doer. The understanding that there never has been a personal doer does not suddenly interfere with functioning; it liberates functioning. The body proceeds without personal involvement. It is an enormous relief from the burden of credit and blame that the ego placed upon everything.
For most of us the falling away of the false personal self is a gradual process. Each lesson of A Course in Miracles, applied to situations in our life, will chip away at our belief in a separate self without arousing too much fear in the ego. Of course, sometimes it happens that the ego does become suspicious then vicious, counseling us to abandon the lessons and their skillful undoing entirely. It is my hope that those who come to Becoming Learners Together (now School for A Course in Miracles) will come to understand that there is nothing to fear in awakening from the dream of separateness.
If you only knew the power of the miracle to free you you would want to offer them. You can learn how. Right here. They can be applied to whatever your circumstances are, no matter where you find yourself, no matter what your history is. The only requirement is to want to learn another way of perceiving. Think of it as a science project if that is your interest. “Humans find another means of perceiving that shows there is another world!!!!”
Or think of it as the greatest love story ever told. “Woman finds her beloved and He gives her the universe.”
Is not the end of seeking and the finding of a treasure beyond your most pleasurable and satisfying imaginings a worthwhile endeavor?
Is not finding the never ending supply of love that can be given without measure a worthy function?
This is an invitation to learn how to work miracles. The only qualification is the willingness to see that your interests are not separate from another.
“Miracles are a way of earning release from fear.” Miracle principle # 28
“Miracles are examples of right thinking, aligning your perceptions with truth as God created it.” Miracle principle #36