From my Catholic childhood the fruits of the Spirit are:
Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
Love – the Spirit lives!
Joy – the Spirit dances!
Peace – the Spirit rests!
Patience – the Spirit waits!
Kindness – the Spirit gives!
Goodness – the Spirit moves!
Gentleness – the Spirit acts!
Faithfulness – the Spirit dwells!
Self-Control – the Spirit smiles!
A single download on St. Stephen’s morning. The flow of words began before I woke:
This last 3-months have been a time of inward contemplation and rest. A consolidation of experience and a garnering in of the fruitful learning of the Spirit from the past 3-years. I find this prolonged quiet time essential for taking stock and renewing in devotion. Often times too many things seemingly understood in the moment, become calcified into conclusions and are misused as a rule in the mind moving forward. This automatic ego response to Correction is based on the desire to not to make mistakes and “get it right” next time. It cripples our ability to listen and follow Guidance and robs us of the Holy Instant which is facilitated by accepting Correction.
If our focus for one moment turns to external performance as a marker for internal satisfaction then we are once again tossed on the seas of mesmerism—adrift in a fluctuating fantasy designed to reinforce our own self-concept preferences. And so we must first become devoted in the moment to our present experience, rather than the glow of the story we are telling ourselves about how the character is coming across in relation to its world and the characters we have populated it with.
We must endeavor to cast off the heavy chains of positive reinforcement and external appreciation and instead reform our addiction by accepting the very experience we are desiring without completion of an activity or seemingly external resolution of conflict. We must become increasingly drawn to seeing that we have a perceptual problem and all upset as merely a decision, easily distracted by circumstance yet resolutely resolvable instantaneously in mind!
Until that draw for healing in mind has taken hold, and the inexorable attraction to Acceptance has fixed in our hearts, we will always appear to be conflicted by external events. Not until the sole solution has been seen in mind can people-pleasing be relinquished. It is true there are many who will attempt to embroil you in interpersonal resolution but that will not result in happiness. It is a miserable compromise where grievances are aired once more for the satisfaction of the “self” that wishes to be heard or understood, and it will merely drag the Spirit unnecessarily through another round of faithlessness. Listen to the Spirit in your Brother, invite your Brother to speak/call to the Spirit in you.
If you come together to make two opposing wills one, you will be very disappointed as that is impossible. There is only one Will. The convincing job needed to accept what is already one is reserved solely for the spirit as the internal guide in the mind. This is why awakening is highly individualized. Unless there is a sincere and safe openness to see where we have been mistaken first (within our own heart) then it will be merely a torturous experience to try to bring two seemingly external forces together for healing—because that is not where the conflict is. All healing is in mind.
To “join” means that you have already seen your brother as not separate from you. It declares that you simply are together. This meeting of minds becomes a synergy of Love and an immediate embrace of care and consideration, a soothing of a fractured doubt thought momentarily accredited spurious cause and affect.
The only reason to meet with an “other” is to be mercifully wrong, mistaken in who you thought you both were and immediately joyfully reminded of your silliness for ever having doubted your innate innocence. Relief is the only reason to come together. It immediately undoes the inherent strain of trying to be something we are not, out of false responsibility and shame, or the guilty blame demanding another be what they are not through projection. Guilt compromises every “interaction” in this world and so it is only in the true safety of Innocence for all that there can be any real connection. It is a declaration of interdependence to accept that Clarity on behalf of the whole. No interim mitigating steps can serve the mind that truly desires to awaken. Forgiveness must be first!
Even in spiritual community with everyone seemingly coming from mixed traditions via various spiritual paths, there can be a shared belief that “people” need to “get along.” A “personae” or mask is never a true meeting, and so marred by false empathy and old-style conflict resolution procedures there seems to be a wariness, some doubt that “trust would settle every problem now.” There is often a malingering addiction to old-style forgiveness. An inherent demand for a pound of flesh and an external vindication of being “right” before offering a pardon, that obscures the purity of the invitation to join “in mind” and denies Innocence for all. Reprieve is a deadly decision. This is forgiveness to destroy and a dirge for the entire group.
The Truth is, there is is only One Mind. Awareness of a seemingly split perspective comes from noticing the splinter in our own experience, which allows us to rush with open arms to the Spirit for help.
So often though, in a micro-management style we seek first to see that everyone is “good” with us, “on board” with our preferences, lined up with our perception and psyched-up for our lateral plan for resolution of the seeming problem. True prayer and openness is often lost in a list of meaningless “tasks” (devoid of their true purpose) where we ask that “people” prove their devotion to our preferred way of operating.
Outward compliance is not synergy. It is a heavy set of hidden-rules designed to minimize true intimacy and increase coercion. It is a lack of faith and any apparent leader in this world cannot function without the supply and demand of motive and reward. Yet here in Mystical Community they must be contemporaneous and inspired—one should not move a muscle without the expected immediate gratification of doing God’s will!
The belief in sacrifice must be faced first, and not one step should be taken in fear, for that is not the Way. Resistance is the ego’s reaction to progress and must be gently witnessed as such. Only in joy can the Way be traveled lightly, for the Spirit has need of happy learners; open children loving to be told what is truly helpful without a care in the world or concern for “personal” safety.
Protectionism is not an obstacle to peace. It is the Call for Love, and allowing it to be met is the purpose of community. Those with a profound calling come together to question the belief in sacrifice and to slowly unwind the mind from the desire for separate interest, seeing the falsity of the claim that it will result in happiness.
If a team are not hearing the same voice then there is no leadership. Guidance is an experience that you are already taken care of, so if there is a lack or disparity in hearing then it must be addressed at the outset. Some lingering doubt thought or unquestioned belief is looping in the mind excited to be seen, desiring to be relinquished in favor of Peace. That is a truly welcoming way to come together to see what wants to be revealed and released! This is a passionate way to live your life. This is a profound shift in cause-and-effect linear thinking, and a revolution that allows orchestration through, rather than management by.
It is Divine providence in action! Everything needed for awakening the mind is freely Given. Relationships, backdrops, assignments, housing, seating, bedding and food all facilitate the play of awakening and none are tolerated as “problems” to be solved or grievances to be overlooked!
The sincerity of the community intention is lost in the apparent need for form completion and the desire for progress of participants on an imaginary time line. A singular desire for PEACE out front is vital. Not having this singular agreement in place is tantamount to an immediate coop and intolerable to a mind opening to trust.
If there is a yes “but”—then the primary commitment is obfuscated immediately. “Yes I’m for peace, but not if my beliefs around comfort are questioned.”
To teach is to demonstrate and to lead is to Trust.
Acceptance that everything of the world is a mirror—every moment merely offering a reflection of beliefs up-for-question and desires for healing in the mind. A veritable crystal ball of available insights arises to show us what we think we think and what we think we feel. If viewed with the Spirit it has a singular purpose of Forgiveness: seeing where we are mistaken in whom we are, and choosing once again. This is a wake up world until we are completely drawn into the happy dream where heaven is here now, fully in awareness.
Delay is deadly. Good use of time makes it easy to Remember whom we are. It is a shift in perception and not a change at all. You see, it wouldn’t be better if things were different because “When you decide upon the form of what you want, you lose the understanding of its purpose.” Preferences in form can seem to be Given as whims but these are more reflections of the internal shifts the mind has accepted. The decision “to be pleased” has happened first.
Do not project the error to time. The belief in time is the source of all conflict. Awareness of this is minimized by procrastination and maximized by present moment focus. Facing the intensity of asking for the Answer now only serves to squeeze out that which creates the illusion of disharmony. Now is good! This is not a force but a gentle invitation. An inspiration to “face” without fear of loss. Allowance is necessary but only truly serves if offered in good faith by one who already accepts the Holy Spirit’s Vision and looks with Charity now on their Brothers and sisters. Otherwise this is waiting—a toe-tapping impatient demand that someone or something (even ourselves) be different than how it seems to be in our perception. This is actually a subtle form of delay!
So much love and so many ordinary miracles unfold on a daily basis that it is easy to miss the accrued awareness. The soft responses and incredulous smiles often reveal more depth than our planned accomplishments. Unforgiveness falls away, yielding to Love and allowance. A profound acceptance simply moves in smoothing out doubt and worry without accounting for the change.
When we pause after a period of transition and stabilize our perception, the relinquishment is more obvious. We notice the blank stares and lack of bother over certain trigger troubles. The lack of interest in previously perceived treats and the innate comfort of remembering whom we are before an opinion spoils our just desert!
To be frank, without reflection in written or conversational form much insight will not only be lost but never fully realized. It is only in allowing the articulation of how we are now “seeing” and “experiencing” the world to be described that we can re-evaluate from where we now reflect what is truly valuable and valueless.
Entire drop down menus of presumed considerations disappear. Importance of focus is revised and we are issued into a new narrative of even our role in relation to self and world. It is a grand play we look upon and all the people merely players. Contemporaneous evaluation of how we feel is essential, yet it is this periodic review of how we actually “are” overall that demonstrates the great relaxation and retirement from the world that is occurring. Revealing us to already be, passers-by.
From “A Course in Miracles” the
Characteristics of God’s Teachers are:
Now comes “a period of settling down.” This is a quiet time, in which the teacher of God rests a while in reasonable peace. Now he consolidates his learning. Now he begins to see the transfer value of what he has learned. Its potential is literally staggering, and the teacher of God is now at the point in his progress at which he sees in it his whole way out. “Give up what you do not want, and keep what you do.” How simple is the obvious! And how easy to do! The teacher of God needs this period of respite. He has not yet come as far as he thinks. Yet when he is ready to go on, he goes with mighty companions beside him. Now he rests a while, and gathers them before going on. He will not go on from here alone.
“A Course in Miracles” (M-4.I.A.6.)
Further Reading of ACIM
A Course in Miracles from The Manual for Teachers ~ Characteristics of God’s Teachers
~ RECOMENDED ~
See levelsofmind.com for a miracle turnaround every time when Healing in Mind!
Shakespeare, “Macbeth” quote:
Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more: it is a tale Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing.