Choosing Peace Instead of War – Lessons 52-58 | Insights on A Course in Miracles

Greetings Course Students,

This week we find the world is in chaos with the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Our lessons over the past week can help us to see with the Eyes of Peace. 

I share my thoughts in this week’s video. Let us hear yours.

From Chapter 23, I. The Irreconcilable Beliefs: Illusion meets illusion; truth, itself. The meeting of illusions leads to war. Peace, looking on itself, extends itself.  War is the condition in which fear is born, and grows and seeks to dominate. Peace is the state where love abides, and seeks to share itself. 

We pray for world leaders, the citizens of Ukraine and Russia, and for the restoration of world peace.

Many Blessings, Rev. Paul

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Thoughts on Week 26, Ch. 15, I. The Two Uses of Time


Can you imagine what it means to have no cares, no worries, no anxieties, but merely to be perfectly calm and quiet all the time? Yet that is what time is for; to learn just that and nothing more.

That it does seem hard to imagine at times given all that occurs in an hour, a day, a week or a year. Yet, I offer to the Holy Spirit “time”, He knows what to do with it. I do not. He can use it for my own well-being.

The ego instead wants me dead. I have felt it breathing down my neck long enough. Who can I trust? “No one,” it whispers and that for now seems true. The ego wants my allegiance. It keeps fear from me, yet it keeps me in fear to work its smoke and mirrors. The ego only sees hell. There is no hope here. There is no one you can trust. All too many times that has been the case. Even now.

Holy Spirit wants me to know there is no hell. Hell is only what the ego has made of the present. Hard to believe when one’s state of mind is full of bleakness. Yet onward and upward Holy Spirit leads me to Heaven. He would undo all fear now. He would remind me to take one step at a time, one instant at a time. In this I will see it reborn. Leave the past behind. Leave all that has hurt me behind. I no longer need it. The past is not my friend, nor anyone there.

Jesus says to take this instant in the here and now, and understand that nothing from the past can reach out and grab me scaring the bejesus out of me. I am completely absolved (no matter what I or others think), I am completely free, and I am wholly loved without condemnation whatsoever. Any condemnation comes from my own mind. From anyone else, that is their own mind to solve.

If you are tempted to be dispirited by thinking how long it would take to change your mind so completely, ask yourself, “How long is an instant?” Could you not give so short a time to the Holy Spirit for your salvation? He asks no more, for He has no need of more. It takes far longer to teach you to be willing to give Him this than for Him to use this tiny instant to offer you the whole of Heaven. In exchange for this instant He stands ready to give you the remembrance of eternity.

So an instant I give and eternity I receive. Isn’t that all I really wanted? An eternity of peace. Hush now and rest in peace.

Stay the Course – Sunday Video Teaching

Stay the Course
with Rev. Deb Phelps

Now that it is almost a month into the practice of the Workbook Lessons, Rev. Deb shares wisdom on dealing with the inability to concentrate, boredom, fear, agitation, restlessness, discouragement, trying too hard, and resistance issues that may appear as you practice.

Recorded January 27th, 2019

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Summary of This Week’s Study Groups – 6/3/18


Joining together with others in the study of A Course in Miracles can assist with more understanding of the material, learning from others’ personal miracle stories, and the encouragement to dive deeper into personal practice. We have three weekly ACIM Study Groups that meet via video and phone conferencing on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. On Sundays in Madison, Wisconsin, we have an in-person study group. Each group has a slightly different focus but all maintain practical application of A Course in Miracles in our lives. Our study group facilitators are Gayle Bartlett, Mari Dole, Ryan Westbrook-Vigue, Darike Vigue, Tracey Frick, Tom Wolff, Rev. Paul Phelps, and myself, Rev. Deb Phelps. My thank to all!

Below you will find the summaries from our groups this week.

To join in our Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday ACIM Study Groups via video or phone conferencing, see the information at this link.

For Madison, Wisconsin information, go to this link.


Sunday ACIM Study Group in Madison

On Sunday we had our full group again, and opened with Lesson 127 – There is no Love but God’s. Our topic was “Loving Others” for our practical application segment. Several shared ways they are forgiving and seeing others differently. The most wonderful Miracle Stories were shared.

Moving forward and into a reading brought to us by Spirit was at the beginning of Chapter 22, Salvation and the Holy Relationship in the Introduction. This is where we find what a holy relationship is.

A holy relationship starts from a different premise. 2 Each one has looked within and seen no lack. 3 Accepting his completion, he would extend it by joining with another, whole as himself. 4 He sees no difference between these selves, for differences are only of the body. 5 Therefore, he looks on nothing he would take. 6 He denies not his own reality [because] it is the truth. 7 Just under Heaven does he stand, but close enough not to return to earth. 8 For this relationship has Heaven’s Holiness. 9 How far from home can a relationship so like to Heaven be?

This led to a discussion of special relationships, both special love, and special hate. How do we deal with this in our lives? Can we have a special relationship with ACIM itself? We can have a special relationship with anyone or anything. Release the attachment and see the truth beyond.

We closed with a silent meditation and announcements of what’s upcoming.

This week’s video teaching is “Loving Others.”

Video Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hTgzbU3HFI8

 


Monday ACIM Study Group

Greetings to all!

We began our Study Group meeting with a meditation based on today’s Workbook Lesson 155, I will step back and let Him lead the way.  We used the lovely thoughts from Rev. Deb, as published on her daily Workbook Lesson post.  Thank you Rev. Deb!

We shared our experiences of knowing and feeling peace when we are truly able to trust in Holy Spirit, and let Him lead!

Today’s Text reading of Ch. 4, Section IV. This Need Not Be was our focus of exploration today.

We experimented by reading through the entire section first, in order to provide context for the deeper discussion of each paragraph.

We shared thoughtfully about experiencing the problematic feelings  which appear as clouds of mood, or as sadness and depression, or as fear and anxiety.  We shared our experiences of liberation when we trust Jesus’ words, and truly “know this need not be“!

Please know that you are welcome to drop-in and join us at Monday Morning Study Group 9:00 CT/10:00 ET!

Blessings to all!

Tracey


Tuesday ACIM Study Group

The Tuesday group met, but I have not received a summary for this week.

 


Wednesday ACIM Study Group

Hi everyone,

Yesterday, our group of five read our assignment for the week, 22. HOW ARE HEALING AND ATONEMENT RELATED?, out loud.  We have found that by so doing, we are able to not only have read it, but, also, we hear it read to us.  This seems to intensify or strengthen our learning and ability to practically apply EVERYTHING we read to every situation in which we may find ourselves.

I believe we are all in agreement that it is truly in the sharing of experiences we have had and practically applying the assignment to them that is the most truly helpful to all of us.  Even if it feels as though an example is “small” or more obscure, inconsequential, the examples we share are equally meaningful and valuable.

For example, one of our participants has some health challenges, another made what could have been interpreted as a rather “snarky” or unloving remark about her struggling to perform what appeared to be a 30 second action that took too long for the individual making this remark.  The participant chose to rise above and refrained from a defensive retort, she saw that she need not be affected by a lack of love or, really, a call for love, on anyone’s part.  Because of this, the second time our participant attempted the 30 second action, actually, it was getting into a truck that was very high off the ground, it took her 30 seconds, it was “endless” the first time she had attempted it!

That is but one example of the power of PA, practical application.  Another was unexpected expenditures caused enormous fear on the part of another who is living on a fixed income.  As she applied the reading to this experience, she became peaceful and was “given” a solution to the challenge.

Isn’t that what happens?  We go into fear, are terrified and any possible loving or inspired solution is lost to us.

Net/net, the reading covers the following:

“To forgive is to heal.  The teacher of God has taken accepting the Atonement for himself as his only function.”  PLEASE NOTE:  If you have time, go to lesson 139, a powerful reinforcement of accepting the Atonement for oneself.  Rev. Deb, Mari and I are currently working through that lesson on our podcast series, BTW.

“Anywhere along the way, the necessary realization of inclusiveness may reach him. If the way seems long, let him be content.”  PLEASE NOTE:  This is a reinforcement of the principle that there is NO order of difficulty in miracles, that ACIM can be applied to any and every challenge, this is where inclusiveness comes in.

“When a teacher of God fails to heal it is because he has forgotten Who he is.  Another’s sickness thus becomes his own.  He will, in fact, be unable to recognize his brother at all, for his Father did not create bodies and so he is seeing in his brother only the unreal.  He will, in fact, be unable to recognize his brother at all, for his Father did not create bodies and so he is seeing in his brother only the unreal.”  (Excerpts from paragraph 5 as well as the following one as well.)

OK, here is the essence of the reading:

“Mistakes do not correct mistakes, and distorted perception does not heal.  Step back now, teacher of God.  You have been wrong.  Lead not the way, for you have lost it.  Turn quickly to your Teacher, and let yourself be healed.”

Jesus is direct as heck, isn’t He?  If you learn nothing but the above on mistakes, you will have benefitted from reading and applying this summary.  Also, Lesson 155 is very helpful in this as well.  I will step back and let Him lead the way.

Amen.

Love,

Gayle


To join in our Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday ACIM Study Groups via video or phone conferencing, see the information at this link.

For Madison, Wisconsin information, go to this link.

I’ll Take My Heart over Fear


I saw the following quote this morning, “Stop being afraid of what can go wrong. Start being excited about what can go right.” I was just mulling this very idea as I unloaded dishes from the dishwasher just prior to heading online. You see, I am embarking on a new venture this week as I open a meditation studio here in Madison. This is a venture that came as quite the surprise to me within the last several weeks. And yes, I’ve seen the rolled eyes and heard the naysayers, yet I don’t desire to listen to their voices. Their voices are only the voices of deep fear within their own being.

The latter half of the quote, “Start being excited about what can go right” is powerful. We dwell too much on the first half which prevents us from the second half of the quote.

For me, I believe it is imperative I live my life to the fullest. I would rather come to the end of my life and be happy I made attempts at those nudges and intuitions I had throughout my time here than to ignore them and say “I wish I would have ______.” There is nothing sacred about sacrifice and suffering.

My entire life I have been one who walks to the beat of a different drummer. I didn’t always follow the crowd, and still, do not. I would rather be who I am than just another in the herd following along mindlessly.

Over the years, I have attempted various ventures, some have continued and some have not. How do I know unless I give it my all? Is it all about success or failure, or is it that I listened to what my heart whispered to me.

I’ll take my heart over fear.

I have made mistakes in my life and I have enough tragic stories to write a book, but that is not the book of my life I want to author. I want to overcome those stories and live in the Light. Yes, they occurred. Yes, they were painful. Yes, I can move beyond them.

What is meditation but a calming of the mind from the nagging words of the ego? There is focus and direction, even when the monkey thoughts swing from tree to tree in the mind if I so decide. You see, I have a choice. I always have a choice in which thoughts to give my attention.

Who do I listen to? I listen to the Divine Voice within that I trust will direct me through the various episodes in my life that will help me to learn patience, embrace love, and experience peace. I admit I love to learn. And, that is how I came to be at so much at peace in my life. We cannot be afraid to live our lives here in the world by what we witness. For you see, we are only seeing what we choose to see. There may be corruption, dissension, and hatred, yet there is also understanding, unity, and love. The thoughts I hold in my mind are the ones that I will see in my world.

Which will you see?

There there are those that speak of “reality.” They say, “You’ve got to have a realistic view,” coughing stuffily. What if there is a choice in the realistic view you have? What kind of world would you see?

I can hear the “but’s” already.

I can only speak from my own journey in life. Your journey is yours and what you make of it. In the meantime, I will continue to follow my inner guidance, and I pray you will follow yours.

If you feel nudged to do something, like start a business, take a new class, become a consultant in your field of expertise, or otherwise step outside your comfort zone, then take a chance and do it. Give it your all and see what unfolds. Remember success is not determined by what the world espouses it should be, and neither is failure. You allow the seed to grow and to flourish, and you respect the learning from it. You can continue to learn from it even if you have to graciously resign from what “it” is. What’s important is, you said “Yes!” to life and there is nothing more important than saying than affirming your journey in life.

Too many people spend their days ruminating about what might have been. Don’t be one of those people. If you enrolled in flight lessons, and you don’t pass the exam to receive your pilot’s license, that doesn’t mean you haven’t soared. You soared in your spirit by taking the step to do so, and your spirit is better for it.

I look upon my new venture with calmness and anticipation of the unknown. I am strong in my faith of this is what it needs to be right now in my life. Occasionally the voice of ego and fear arises, but then I remember what leads me and that is sharing my knowledge and talents with others so that they too may know peace within themselves. If I touch just one person by this, it will be worth all the time and effort I put into this. And you know, I already have witnessed that I have. And that’s the gift.

Peace,

Rev. Deb

Meditate Madison – www.meditatemadison.com

Meditation Stepping Stones – www.meditationsteppingstones.com

MiraclesOne – www.miraclesone.org

In Our Quiet Hearts


In Our Quiet Hearts

with Rev. Deb Phelps

Rev. Deb shares how we can indeed feel the Love of God within us. Instead of the world of fear and hatred we see on the news, we can exchange it for the world the Love of God reveals. In our quiet hearts, we will be able to experience His Love now and always.

Recorded February 4th, 2018

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Meditation Stepping Stones – www.meditationsteppingstones.com

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If I Defend Myself, I am Attacked – Entitled to Miracles Unity Radio Show

Episode Description:

Jesus tells us in A Course in Miracles that defense is fear. Each time we defend, we increase the fear. But what are we defending? The ego. Since we have the belief that we cannot trust God, we continue to plan and scheme to save the face of the ego. However, the good news is we have another way to choose: We can choose to trust. We can be open to change and open to receive inner wisdom. In this Walk of Trust series, Lesson 6, Rev. Deb shares that seeking for guidance outside of ourselves, or following our own plans, will never truly fulfill us or make us happy.

Continue reading “If I Defend Myself, I am Attacked – Entitled to Miracles Unity Radio Show”

Roll the Stone Away Meditation

“Ask but my help to roll the stone away, and it is done according to His Will.” C-ep.2:3

Use this 20 minute guided meditation to practice rolling the stone of fear away from your holy mind with the help of Jesus. In releasing the old thoughts, the light will dawn within your mind and you will experience a new perspective. Inspired by the Easter passages in A Course in Miracles.

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The direct link to the audio is: https://api.spreaker.com/download/episode/4332245/rollstoneawaymeditation2010.mp3

 

 

 

 

Thoughts on Day 30


Thoughts on Day 30

We’ve made it to 30 days (plus a couple of Sundays). I hope you all have the feeling of renewal. I know I do.

Our reading was “The Decision for Guiltlessness.” In this reading, there are two different “prayers” if you will. The first:

Say therefore, to yourself, gently, but with the conviction born of the Love of God and of His Son:

What I experience I will make manifest.

If I am guiltless, I have nothing to fear.

I choose to testify to my acceptance of the Atonement, not to its rejection. 

I would accept my guiltlessness by making it manifest and sharing it.

Let me bring peace to God’s Son from his Father.

In this, I reflected. If I focus on fear in my mind and all of its forms. You know, the judgment, jealousy, the hurt, the anger, et.al then I will see more of it in my life. In fact, everywhere I look that is what I will see. And I did, prior to my study of the Course. Even thereafter, until I learned to recall Jesus’ words, “I have nothing to fear.” Nothing to fear. We are warriors in the sense of the Buddhist tradition. We have the courage to look within. I had that courage and it is what has brought me to where I am today.

It is all opposite of how I lived my life 25 years ago. I do not fear outcomes; I trust. I do not compare myself with others; I love me as I am. I do not live in conflict for I choose peace first.

Our second “prayer” comes at the end where we are asked to say to the Holy Spirit ONLY, “Decide for me,” and it is done. He instructs thusly: Whenever you are in doubt what you should do, think of His Presence in you, and tell yourself this, and only this:

He leadeth me and knows the way, which I know not.

Yet He will never keep from me what He would have me learn.

And so I trust Him to communicate to me all that He knows for me.

Then let Him teach you quietly how to perceive your guiltlessness, which is already there.

This is how to live my life. I ask of the Holy Spirit to be with me in my mind. I keep the connection open to Him all throughout the day. I accept the Atonement (the undoing of fear). I trust His Guidance. I follow the path of peace.

That’s about it. Do you want to live this way too?

How did I do it? How do I still do it?

I stick with A Course in Miracles and ONLY A Course in Miracles. I do not chase the new book or derivative. I do not buy every book by every author. I don’t attend workshops and conferences (anymore). I may write these books and teach workshops and classes, but my focus is always on ONE path. Yes, I do appreciate other paths. And, yes, meditation is part of my path and it is in the Workbook. (I’ll be detailing that at the retreat and a later class on the subject).

The point is. I do not allow myself to be distracted with all the shiny objects (the so-called enlightened teachers, the gurus, tons of books and CDs, authors, etc.) I start my day before anything meditating and working the lesson or recently these affirmations I have been given to share with you. I am not special nor do I wish to be special. I wish only to share what I learn and pass it on, just as Jesus has with us. He has said to us that all the things he has done, you can do as well. We all can hear Holy Spirit’s Voice. We all can heal our minds.

Focus in on your study and your practice. Check in with Holy Spirit as to where to go, who to see and what to do. Go beyond the words on the page and live the words. That’s what I do. I enjoy working with students in a more intimate atmosphere like a class, a private session or at a retreat. We share together as like-minds all here to be students of one another. I still learn, even after all these years. Why? Because I am open to learning. If I think I know it all, then I know nothing because I have forgotten to love and to be kind and to see myself as equals with everyone here.

That is our lesson every moment. So, live this Course with gusto, my friends. I am here only to be truly helpful, and to walk with my brothers in peace.

 

This is part of our 40 Days of Light: From Lent to Easter

See www.40daysoflight.org for more information.

Declare Your Innocence and You Are Free

From Rev. Deb’s Unity Radio Show
Episode Description:

We do not have to fall into the illusion that we are sinful, guilty, and surrounded by darkness. That is the ego’s fear trap. In truth, we are innocent and today we declare our freedom. Rev. Deb relates the thinness of fear’s veil as the Light of Purity and Love will always shine it away. In addition, she shares a loving-kindness practice to help you remember the innocence not only of yourself but that of others.

March 10, 2017

Download this episode and others: http://www.unity.fm/program/EntitledToMiracles

Available as a podcast on iTunes!

40 Days of Light – Day 7

Miracles represent freedom from fear.

We return to the beginning of the Course with the Miracle Principles. We learn that “Atonement” is not what we thought it was. “Atoning” means “undoing” thus, it is the undoing of fear. This is an essential part of the Atonement. we do not have to make sin or the error real as we had learned in our religion of origin perhaps. Miracles, those shifts from fear to love, are a correction. They heal our perception. The main perception of course, is we believe we are separated from God. You can also see this popup in different circumstances in our lives with loved ones, “not so loved” ones, co-workers, the current state of the government, past relationships, and so much more. What perception do you want healed today? Ask for the Holy Spirit or Jesus’ assistance and you will never fail.

Reference: Text, Ch. 1. 1. Principles of Miracles

Namaste,
Rev. Deb

P.S. You can see previous days by going to www.40daysoflight.org. You can use our Practical Application Facebook Group to share your thoughts, musings, miracles, fears, loves or whatever comes to mind during the series. We are all equal and we are all here to share with one another.

Please know we offer many free ACIM Resources on our website: www.miraclesone.org Our sole focus is on ACIM and its practice in our lives.

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