Last week I wrote about the radical nature of love, which is its unconditional inclusiveness. Love does not judge; Love is unaware of anything to judge.
For most of us, that's too big a lift, and we end up with something that feels easier but is compromised. We love most people but not all people. We embrace most of life but reject some of it.
That is not a crime against God or nature, but it is the problem of separation, which is what A Course in Miracles is given to undo. The Holy Spirit has one job: to endlessly translate experience into learning opportunities for love.
We are here - as William Blake wrote - to "learn to bear the beams of love."
In response to that post I got several emails asking a variation of this question:
I get that I’m supposed to love the Neo-Nazis and arms dealers, the rapists and murderers but I just can't. And to be honest, on most days, I don't want to. It's hard enough to love the neighbor with the leaf-blower at six a.m.. It feels hopeless. It feels unfair to have to try and love that way.
To which my response is, yes. I hear this. Me, too.
The reason that we do not love our Neo-Nazi brothers and sisters is not because we are virtuous and they are not or because they are hate-filled and we hate only hate.
We do not love our Neo-Nazi brothers and sisters because we are scared to love them, and we are scared to love them because we are scared to love our own selves.
The outside world is a picture of an inside condition (T-21.in.1:5). If we see hate out there, then there is hate in here. If we are perceive lovelessness outside, then we are not facing it inside.
It is this crisis to which the Holy Spirit responds.
Look as the Holy Spirit looks, and understand as He understands. His understanding looks back to God in remembrance of me. He is in communion with God always, and He is part of you (T-5.III.11:6-8).
When we do this work - when we go deeply into hate, then we discover that hate is a form of fear, and we know fear (T-5.IV.1:1). The form fear takes will vary but the fear itself will be intimately familiar. And when we go into the fear with the Holy Spirit, then we learn that Love undoes fear. "In the presence of those who hear the Holy Spirit's Call to be as one, the ego fades away and is undone” (T-5.IV.1:11).
Then the way to Heaven is clear, and our desire to walk it is trumped only by our desire to ensure that everybody - without qualification or condition - walks it with us.
The Holy Spirit understands we are at war with each other and the world, a war in which "win" and "lose" seem to be the only way out. It also knows that “win” and “lose” are not solutions but symptoms of the problem. The way out of conflict - and thus the way to the peace, love and understanding for which we so long - is to listen to the Teacher of Peace, not the teacher of chaos and fear.
It’s only complicated if we want it to be.
Nonviolence - which is the only application of love recognized by Love - is the way. We give up our right to enact and sustain conflict. We give it up as a frame of perceiving and understanding and acting. When it occurs (which it does), we reject it as an error. We are willing to be corrected.
Everyone is scared to do this. That is why the arguments against doing it are so prevalent and persuasive. Scared people can sound very reasonable when they want to justify their fear, when they want to protect their right to fear.
What save us is seeing that our healing and our brother's healing are one thing - they are a single experience mirroring itself to itself. The game is not "I'm broken/you're broken, how do we get to I'm okay/you're okay" but rather, "am I willing to recognize myself in my brother or sister now?"
It is a shift in responsibility. You don't have to fix yourself, you have to remember yourself.
You don't have to fix your brother or sister, you just have to remember that they are not other than you. God has one Child; Heaven admits all who knock; the absence of differences is what Love is (T-7.V.5:7).
The other shows you only truth, which you will love because you will understand it. Understanding is appreciation, because what you understand you can identify with, and by making it part of you, you have have accepted it with love. This how God Himself created you; in understanding, appreciation and in love (T-7.V.9:3-5).
How do you love a Nazi?
You don't. Christ does.
And the Holy Spirit teaches you how to remember that you are Christ.
I mean this literally: when you perceive a reason to exclude another from Love, ask the Holy Spirit to reinterpret the situation for you. As sincerely as possible, ask for help in seeing the situation as Christ, rather than as Sean.
The Holy Spirit will tell you very clearly and directly who you are dealing with, what the actual problem is, and how to contribute to its undoing here and now. In A Course in Miracles, Jesus is very clear that this does not involve bodies, much less what bodies do or don’t do.
I do not want to share my body in communion because this is to share nothing . . . Yet I do want to share my mind with you because we are of one Mind, and that Mind is ours. See only this Mind everywhere, because only this is everywhere and in everything. It is everything because it encompasses all things within itself (T-7.V.10:7, 9-11).
When we don't fear, we live in our natural state of trusting God. Then and only then do we consistently act in love, because only then do we understand that we are Love. There is nothing else.
Thank you, always, for sharing this way with me.
Of course I love ACIM (or I wouldn't be on your site!), and I appreciate that William Blake wrote - to "learn to bear the beams of love."
Have had an interesting shift in turning fear into calm loving: I have a neighbor around the corner who has decorated his rented house with many Trump flags, such as Don't Tread On Me, and Trump 2024, and something about Brandon, and accompanying signs. I took photos of his pickup truck with its license plate and contemplated sending it to the FBI. I would bet he was a part of Jan. 6th. I think he goes off to join his buddies for training. His vehicle is away from time to time and away during that Jan. 6th time. Seriously attending to inner FORGIVENESS work, seems to have caused a shift that I now feel compassion for him, and no longer that adversarial fear! After about 4 years I saw him face to face while driving past, and realized I felt this kind of sadness for him.
This shift was nothing I intended or prayed about. It just happened. Good to share this on your site!
Thank you for this lesson today. It pairs nicely with with today’s ACIM lesson 121 Forgiveness is The Key To Happiness.
The lesson tells us
“The unforgiving mind is in despair, without the prospect of a future which can offer anything but more despair. Yet it regards its judgment of the world as irreversible, and does not see it has condemned itself to this despair. It thinks it cannot change, for what it sees bears witness that its judgment is correct. It does not ask, because it thinks it knows. It does not question, certain it is right.” (W - 121 p5).
The lesson then guides us on how to forgive the person we perceive as our enemy.
“Begin the longer practice periods by thinking of someone you do not like, who seems to irritate you, or to cause regret in you if you should meet him; one you actively despise, or merely try to overlook. It does not matter what the form your anger takes. You probably have chosen him already. He will do. Now close your eyes and see him in your mind, and look at him a while. Try to perceive some light in him somewhere; a little gleam which you had never noticed. Try to find some little spark of brightness shining through the ugly picture that you hold of him. Look at this picture till you see a light somewhere within it, and then try to let this light extend until it covers him, and makes the picture beautiful and good. Look at this changed perception for a while, and turn your mind to one you call a friend. Try to transfer the light you learned to see around your former “enemy” to him. Perceive him now as more than friend to you, for in that light his holiness shows you your savior, saved and saving, healed and whole.“ ((W - 121 p11)
Recognizing you are one with your brother, and learning to forgive yourself for using them to attack yourself is many times easier said than done. But with Holy Spirt’s guidance miracles happen.
Thank you for being the teacher you are.
Rest in Peace today, Brother,