Miracle Toolbox Week 20 | Threshold of Enlightenment

Greetings Mighty Companions!

On this 20th week of filling our Miracle Toolboxes with enlightenment tools, we finish up the last two sections under the Prayer chapter within the Song of Prayer. Some key take-aways to keep in mind from section IV. Praying with Others (S-1.IV) include:

  1. In order to truly share in prayer with others, we must have reached the second level of prayer in which we see no one else as an enemy, and we begin to recognize that “we go together, you and I” (S-1.IV.1) up the ladder to heaven.
  2. This mindset will quicken our ascent up the Ladder of Prayer, however, we must watch out for a common mistake. Individuals or groups who join together to ask for things and occurrences to change within the world are making a mistake with regard to the practice of True Prayer.
  3. To practice True Prayer correctly as a group, “those who pray together must remember to ask, before all else, what is the Will of God” (S-1.IV.3).

In section V. The Ladder Ends (S-1.V), Jesus explains that prayer is a way to true humility. He states, “The truly humble have no goal but God because they need no idols, and defense no longer serves a purpose…Now prayer is lifted from the world of things, of bodies, and of gods of every kinds, and you can rest in holiness at last” (S-1.V.2-3). He also reminds us that “A dream has veiled the face of Christ from you. Now can you look upon His sinlessness. You have come almost to Heaven” (S-1.V.3). This is a key reminder about seeing the light within ourselves during meditation. If you will recall from our previous Miracle Toolbox discussions, the reference to “the face of Christ” is a reference to seeing the light of Christ within ourselves through the use of our spiritual sight in meditation. When we perceive the flash of light within our minds, there will be an instant recognition that this is the light of our Christ selves – and of everyone else. At this point, we have reached the threshold of enlightenment because we recognize that we “stand before the gate of Heaven, and your brother stands beside you there” (S-1.V.4).

Our tool from the Holy Spirit to be added to our Miracle Toolboxes this week is a tuning fork. When a musician has an instrument such as a violin that is not in harmony with itself, the musician can use a tuning fork to bring the strings of the instrument back into correct resonance. Similarly, we can think of the practice of True Prayer as the tuning fork tool we use to raise ourselves up the ladder, back into harmony with God, and onto the threshold of enlightenment.

Many Blessings!

Rev. Paul

Miracle Toolbox: Week 17 | True Prayer

Holy Spirit Tool Analogy: Painter’s Tool

Hello Everyone!

Welcome to week 17 of building our Miracle Toolboxes with the Holy Spirit. Many of us are familiar with traditional ways of praying. They can include asking God for help with our needs, questions, and concerns. They can also include requests for others to heal or change their lives, or for circumstances to improve around our jobs or relationships. However, within The Song of Prayer supplement that Jesus shared with Helen Schucman after the transcribing of A Course in Miracles, he begins to introduce us to the art of “True Prayer”. If you have a copy of the Third Edition of A Course in Miracles from the Foundation for Inner Peace, you will find the supplement after the Clarification of Terms at the end of the book. In the first section titled, True Prayer (S-1.I), Jesus explains that “the secret of true prayer is to forget the things you think you need…but instead to practice stepping aside; letting go, and practice a quiet time of listening and loving” (S-1.I.5). He later states that “prayer is an offering; a giving up of yourself to be at one with Love” (S-1.I.5). For many of us, this is a new way of thinking about the practice of prayer. A great way to help us begin to learn the new practice can be found in Workbook Lesson 109: I rest in God. This lesson helps us to practice stillness, deep listening, and healing while resting in silence with God. Definitely try this meditation several times when you’re feeling down – it’s a quick restorative and spirit booster for sure!

Love,

Rev. Paul

Enhancing Your A Course in Miracles Practice: What is True Prayer?


Our next topic in our series is “True Prayer.” Most of us became familiar with prayer in our religion of origin. For me, it was Catholicism with the memorization of a multitude of prayers. It never felt meaningful to me as I was maturing from a youngster to a teenager. It was something I had to do, especially for penance. It never seemed to have a heartfelt emotion to it.

What is True Prayer?

This is a question I receive often coupled with “How do I pray?” With A Course in Miracles, prayer is seen differently. There is a supplement to the Course called The Song of Prayer. In this supplement, which can be found in the 3rd Edition of the Foundation of Inner Peace’s version of ACIM (and a separate pamphlet for those with older books), it outlines what prayer can be.

Continue reading “Enhancing Your A Course in Miracles Practice: What is True Prayer?”

There is a Prayer in Our Heart


Last night we commenced our new Living ACIM class, “Prayer of the Heart.” As the class and I travel over the next six weeks, we will be learning how “prayer” is presented by Jesus in A Course in Miracles.

As we gathered in our first session, we first experienced a body scan relaxation and meditation. I invited the students to ground and center themselves and ask what their intention would be for the next six weeks of our time together. The intention is their desire for an outcome or what they had hoped to gain when the class had come to a close.

In the sharing that took place regarding our intention, students wanted a sense of inner peace away from the distractions of the world. A few mentioned how they start their day with God and how easily they are pulled away from maintaining the connection. Some wanted to improve their communication with God. Others wanted to let go of self-criticism and learn to be gentle with oneself. And, some wanted to offer up their limitations and be in gratitude. All students realized that God is always speaking and wanted to learn how to stop and listen.

After this initial intention-setting, we had a dialogue on our past and current prayer life. What it was or what students learned in the past and what has transformed. Here are just a few of those thoughts:

  • In the past, I was begging when praying and then I felt punished. This changed with ACIM, and I am grateful for the new experiences.
  • I was always asking and then at the whim of God’s mercy. Now I affirm and am open to the blessing and awareness of peace.
  • I grew up where there was a Book of Common Prayers. We were always saying the same prayers. Now I like to use affirmative prayer. I still pray but the form has changed.
  • I’m afraid to trust and relinquish to what God’s plan is. I want to learn how to forgive as that has been an issue in my life. Instead, I want to radiate love to others.
  • In Sunday School growing up, I was always asking for things. Recently I learned how to create a Gratitude Journal and that has been my new way of praying.
  • I learned to pray and ask for help. And, don’t forget about the starving children in India. I had to pray to God to fix or change things. But these things never change and I felt that God was ineffectual. I’m learning now to let go and let God and let myself be Who I am. I like to hold others in the Light.
  • Memorized prayers, that’s what I learned growing up Catholic. These were prayers I learned by rote, but the words never really seemed to have any meaning behind them at all. I just recited and somehow that was supposed to make something happen. There was no meaning behind it and that was what was missing; the meaning. Now, I turn to a Higher Power. I still can have a feeling of awkwardness and I want to learn what True Prayer is.  I know I need to be with the experience.

As we continue, the class will be learning True Prayer as Jesus teaches us in ACIM. We will study Part II of the Workbook for Students and the supplement “The Song of Prayer.” And, importantly practice what we learn on a daily basis which will involve creating our own prayers. The gift the class receives comes from the sharing with one another. When I teach, that is my main focus that we hear from the wisdom of every member in the class. The significance in this is God speaks to all of us and there is not a single person who is above all, including myself. I have merely the mid-wife for our class as I guide us all forward.

If you find this topic interesting and you would like to participate in the class, we can still take new students on the second week. I record each week for the students’ benefit just in case a class needs to be missed due to illness or a prior appointment. After the second week I cannot take new students in the class.

Here is the “Prayer of the Heart” class information at this link.

Blessings to all,

Rev. Deb

 

“True Prayer” Video

Teaching with Rev. Deb Phelps

Prayer is a stepping aside; a letting go, a quiet time of listening and loving. S-1.I.5:1

What is True Prayer according to Jesus in A Course in Miracles? All answers are contained within True Prayer.
Music by Karen Drucker
Recorded August 11th, 2013

Broadcast live from our center in Madison, WI to YouTube
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I. True Prayer – Part 1


I. True Prayer

Our study of The Song of Prayer

In True Prayer, it is just a way to communicate with God. We are not questioning and we are not begging God. It’s not a slot machine or a Santa Claus wish list. We do not focus on what we want in the world, the illusions, for that keeps us in the realm of the ego. True Prayer is asking for the recognition that we know Who we are in Truth. There is no reason to beg for illusions for illusions shift and change. We don’t really know what we want. What we don’t realize is that our only need is peace. And peace we already have within us. Let us accept the gift that lies within us.

 

Now this doesn’t mean we cannot ask the Holy Spirit for specifics. But when it comes down to it as Jesus has taught us there is only one problem and one answer. The belief in separation is the problem and oneness in the answer. As I said, we can ask for specifics if that is where we are in our mind. As Jesus says here, “You cannot be asked to accept answers which are beyond the level of need that you can recognize?”

 

Yet ask yourself, what if you do not receive for which you earnestly prayed? Does that mean that God does not exist? He goes on to tell us that the real prayer is one of gratitude and love. We have everything we need within us and it is not the things of this world.

 

At the end he tells us that the secret to true prayer is forgetting the things you think you need. By praying for solutions of problems in the world, it means we are believing that the problem is real. To us, it seems pretty darn real, doesn’t it? It takes real trust to let go of our needs and place it into the Hands of God. Great trust and faith. Yet when we offer this gift, we are truly blessed.

 

Our Healing Circle meditation each month is for just this. Our meditation recordings are listed here: https://miraclesone.org/2015/07/healing-circle-meditations/

Join us for our email study of The Song of Prayer on our Healing Circle as we open to living in Prayer, Forgiveness and Healing – http://groups.google.com/d/forum/miraclesone-healingcircle 

 

I. True Prayer, under 1. Prayer in THE SONG OF PRAYER

 

  1. True Prayer

S-1.I.1.  Prayer is a way offered by the Holy Spirit to reach God. 2 It is not merely a question or an entreaty. 3 It cannot succeed until you realize that it asks for nothing. 4 How else could it serve its purpose? 5 It is impossible to pray for idols and hope to reach God. 6 True prayer must avoid the pitfall of asking to entreat. 7 Ask, rather, to receive what is already given; to accept what is already there.

S-1.I.2.  You have been told to ask the Holy Spirit for the answer to any specific problem, and that you will receive a specific answer if such is your need. 2 You have also been told that there is only one problem and one answer. 3 In prayer this is not contradictory. 4 There are decisions to make here, and they must be made whether they be illusions or not. 5 You cannot be asked to accept answers which are beyond the level of need that you can recognize. 6 Therefore, it is not the form of the question that matters, nor how it is asked. 7 The form of the answer, if given by God, will suit your need as you see it. 8 This is merely an echo of the reply of His Voice. 9 The real sound is always a song of thanksgiving and of Love.

S-1.I.3.  You cannot, then, ask for the echo. 2 It is the song that is the gift. 3 Along with it come the overtones, the harmonics, the echoes, but these are secondary. 4 In true prayer you hear only the song. 5 All the rest is merely added. 6 You have sought first the Kingdom of Heaven, and all else has indeed been given you.

S-1.I.4.  The secret of true prayer is to forget the things you think you need. 2 To ask for the specific is much the same as to look on sin and then forgive it. 3 Also in the same way, in prayer you overlook your specific needs as you see them, and let them go into God’s Hands. 4 There they become your gifts to Him, for they tell Him that you would have no gods before Him; no love but His. 5 What could His answer be but your remembrance of Him? 6 Can this be traded for a bit of trifling advice about a problem of an instant’s duration? 7 God answers only for eternity. 8 But still all little answers are contained in this.

 

True Prayer – 8/11/13

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TruePrayer

 

True Prayer
with Rev. Deb Phelps

Prayer is a stepping aside; a letting go, a quiet time of listening and loving. S-1.I.5:1

What is True Prayer according to Jesus in A Course in Miracles? All answers are contained within True Prayer.

Guided Meditation

Recorded August 11th, 2013
MiraclesOne in Madison, WI

58 minutes

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Namaste,

Rev. Deb Phelps, Senior Minister

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