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Sitting at His Feet

Posted by Roberta Grimes • December 22, 2018 • 27 Comments
Jesus, The Source, The Teachings of Jesus

A week ago came one of those moments when you really help me grow. The previous week I had published a blog post on scientific cluelessness that had been months in the making, was rich with linked articles, and was a lot of fun to write; and it had attracted precisely one commenter and not a single email. Then during that next week it occurred to me that it might be good to write about the ego, and the result has been so many comments and emails that I have lost count! So I finally do get it. Growing spiritually has become foremost in your mind! Most wonderful for me has been the fact that your words have helped me realize some things that never would have occurred to me without your help. So thank you for once again thinking deeply and taking the time to share your thoughts. We fight for humanity’s future together!

I am coming to see now, thanks to you, that we have a big new task before us. There is a growing interest in the afterlife, and more and more people are coming to realize that we enter these earth-lives so we can grow spiritually. All of this does feel like progress! But our pressing task now is to figure out how we can help everyone on earth to achieve the spiritual growth that apparently is the whole reason why this universe exists. All our deeply fear-based religions are anathema to spiritual growth, and there is no other obvious source of information about how we can raise our spiritual vibrations and make a big success of this lifetime!

Except, of course, for A Course in Miracles. ACIM is what amounts to a Ph.D.-level exposition of the teachings of Jesus, and the Lord Himself is its likely head author. I recommend the Course without reservation, and I find it to be an especially useful way to draw out and smack down your ego. I said this last week, and a perceptive commenter responded with a quote from Marianne Williamson. Ms. Williamson is one of the foremost experts on A Course in Miracles worldwide. Our commenter remarked that this is what Ms. Williamson has to say about what happens when you invite the Lord into your life:

“When you ask God into your life, you think God is going to come into your psychic house, look around, and see that you just need a new floor or better furniture, and that everything needs just a little cleaning — and so you go along for the first six months thinking how nice life is now that God is there. Then you look out the window one day and you see that there’s a wrecking ball outside. It turns out that God actually thinks your whole foundation is shot and you’re going to have to start over from scratch. Jesus and his wrecking ball. Suddenly the image of Jesus standing at the door and knocking is transformed. ‘Hey, anybody home? I want to knock this sucker down so we can totally rebuild it. You ready for that?’ It’s what Jesus and his wrecking ball is set to do. Knock it all down to its very foundation. Rip out the foundation if necessary. Jesus wants to make room for something new. Jesus wants to knock down every part of you that doesn’t reflect God’s realm.”

I was shocked and horrified! Here is a shortened version of my answer:

That is not the Jesus of the Gospels! He would say the only problem with your house is there are mice running around in it, squirrels in the attic, and even squatters that you allowed to move in because you were too busy to keep them out even though they are a nuisance and you hate them. So you follow Jesus’s suggestions about how to remove whatever is not a part of your eternal self from the house, so soon there is nothing more in it of earthly imperfections but it is entirely of God. And how beautiful it is! It doesn’t even need much paint, once you and He have scrubbed the walls clean. And with all the little creatures gone and the squatters decamped, the Lord helps you even to do the repainting.

The more time you spend at home with Jesus, the more perfect your whole life starts to feel. You become so happy in your life with the Lord that one day you say, “You know, Jesus, maybe we should put a wing on the house? Then we can invite those homeless people back and have them bring their friends because I have just realized they are all my cousins! And I find that I do love each of them, now that I have reclaimed my eternal home with You and come to realize that it is built on and made of and filled with love.”

Eventually you and Jesus might add that wing, or you might even build an entire city around your house so you can better love and care for the world because it turns out they are all your cousins! But this love that fills you now is nothing new: it always was your own true nature. Your rediscovery of it is the beautiful fruit of your having been encouraged by the Lord of the Gospels to reclaim who you are eternally! Your foundation IS God. All you need to do is remember that fact and get rid of every earthly distraction. The Gospel teachings are meant to help us return to our foundation in God so we can reclaim our eternal nature, not to make us start all over from scratch and become someone else altogether!

I remained horrified by Marianne Williamson’s words until the following morning, when I realized she is right. If you are a Christian, you have built your spiritual house out of fear-based dogmas that make you feel terrible about yourself. “I am so sinful that God can’t forgive me so Jesus has to die or I am going to hell” is the core of what Christianity teaches us to believe about ourselves. “That Christmas Baby lying in the manger is going to have to suffer and die because I am so unworthy of God’s forgiveness. And Jesus will die for me! Of course He will, because unlike me, Jesus is beautiful and perfect. So now I know that I am “saved,” but that doesn’t make me feel even one whit better about my unworthy self. I am sinful. My core nature is evil. Because Adam ate the apple, this is who I am.” So if I am a practicing Christian, I am going to need that wrecking ball! My entire spiritual foundation is rotten. No choice but to trash it all and start over.

A Course in Miracles has to repair the damage done to us by Christian teachings before it can begin to help us grow spiritually. As I look at the Course freshly, I see that a lot of it is aimed at getting rid of those false Christian fears that keep us from realizing that our spiritual foundation is nothing but God. Our genuine nature is perfect love. If it were not for Christianity, our spiritual growth would be so easy: we could simply reclaim what we already are!  

So now I am coming to think that the only way we ever can help the Lord to build the love-based movement He came to earth to start will be if we can find a way to erase Christianity from our personal histories. We will need to go back two thousand years and sit down together at the feet of the Lord and listen to Him. Listen only to Him! We are dressed in homespun, you and I. Our feet are bare, the sun is hot on our heads, and the breeze smells sweet and green. We are looking up at the face of the Teacher, marveling with all the people around us at the amazing new ways that He talks about God.

We know God as a stern but loving Parent. God insists that we obey His commandments and live and eat and dress in ways that keep our minds focused on Him, but God deeply loves us! God has chosen us from all the world to be His own people, so we joyously sing to Him songs of praise:

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
Give thanks to the God of gods,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
Give thanks to the Lord of lords,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
To Him who alone does great wonders,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting
(Psalm 136:1-4).

You and I as first-century Jews live in the certainty of God’s love and care. We are sinners, we make mistakes, but God understands. We suffer travails in the world, but God will send a Messiah in the line of David who will be our King in the better world to come. The Teacher speaking to us now might even be that Messiah! But we are confounded by the things He does, and especially confounded by the things He says:

“… Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.

“Blessed are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

“Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you” (MT 5:9-12).

You and I so much want to believe that Jesus is the true Messiah who will bring to God’s chosen people the dawning of a much better world! But as observant first-century Jews, how are we to make sense of His words? Let’s begin to talk about that next week….

 

Jesus as Infant photo credit: JZ-DESIGN <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/97784294@N04/29056964601″>Thiméo.G Shooting</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/”>(license)</a>

Tidy house photo credit: Spencer Means <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/28643687@N08/32006422078″>Little house in Ellsworth, Maine</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/”>(license)</a>

Your house photo credit: Onasill ~ Bill Badzo – Vacation OFF <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/7156765@N05/43643005010″>Aurora Ontario – Canada – Poplar Villa – The Chateau 1912</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/”>(license)</a>

Jesus captive photo credit: byb64 <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/50879678@N03/41596213070″>”El Expolio” 1577-1579, El Greco, sacristie, cathédrale Sainte Marie (XIIIe-XVe), Tolède, Castille-La Manche, Espagne.</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/”>(license)</a>

Torah scroll photo credit: Lawrie Cate <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/24298372@N04/3370795563″>DSC03531</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/”>(license)</a>

Raising Lazarus photo credit: eshao5721 <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/165868022@N02/44144524830″>La Resurrezione di Lazzaro glorifica Dio</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>(license)</a>

Roberta Grimes

Roberta Grimes is an internationally recognized expert on death and the afterlife. Learn More

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27 thoughts on “Sitting at His Feet

  1. Eckhart Tolle publishes some great stuff. You should quote some of his ideas which are precisely in sync with your own. Love your emails, Best wishes.

    1. Dear David, I have read some Eckhart Tolle, and what he writes does resonate with the teachings of the Master, but I am feeling led now not to read what others write. The Williamson quote came from a commenter here; I’m sure I wouldn’t have seen it otherwise.

      My role for now seems to be a narrow one, and perhaps it’s too narrow, but I don’t write the rules! I am being called to listen only to Jesus, and what I find as I go deeper is that Jesus is an ardent radical dropped into a time in history when for a radical to speak the truth was a death sentence. It was as if the Lord had been a modern Libertarian dropped into the heart of Nazi Germany or Stalinist Russia and determined to teach the necessity of individual freedom of thought. Good luck with that!

      What I am finding, too, as I more easily look at ancient Judaism and the teachings of Jesus while erasing the entire Christian religion from history is that if you approach reading Jesus with any Christian assumptions in your mind at all it is literally impossible to understand what He is saying. For example, at the moment I am wrestling with the likelihood that He meant to eradicate as incompatible with human spiritual growth the whole notion of sin. He meant to throw away not just the word, but the entire concept!

      Perhaps some of the teachers that I am now forbidden to read may be coming out and saying aloud that Jesus took away sin while He was alive (which is yet more proof that He didn’t come to die for our sins), so perhaps the idea that Jesus abolished the notion that any action is wrong in itself doesn’t seem so radical to you as it seems to me! But to me it feels like blasphemy to be writing these words. How can they possibly be right? How is it possible that for two thousand years Christians have been preaching sin, judgment, and redemption, when the Messiah told us as He spoke in literal fulfillment of Jewish prophesy that humanity at last had moved beyond the notion of sin and into the reign of love?

      Thank you for sharing this voyage, David! We are doing it together, and each of us has an essential role to play.

  2. I don’t subscribe either to this terrible sinner business. I am not perfect, but don’t deserve to burn in hell for all eternity.

    But Jesus said to somebody “be healed and sin no more”.
    Something like that. I understand it as that person had some wrong ideas about whatever, and made him/herself sick.

    I can’t remember the whole story, you probably can.
    What do you think? We make ourselves sick? Or could it be the person had done something wrong to somebody, maybe even hated them?

    Love is the answer to everything, and I see it as the main teaching of Jesus. Love your neighbour as yourself.
    I have tried this all my life, and I am 86 and not sick in any way, although not free from being annoyed at politicians. You wrote about that a little while ago. I still find it very hard to love some of them. But I don’t know them personally, only from their public image. Could it be that they are trying their best? Nah- oh, you wrote about how even Jesus lost it when he cleared the money tables at the temple.
    No wonder they punished him. What if he had not done it and not been crucified? Would we ever have heard about him?

    There are several things I look forward to find out about when I leave my body. I hope someone will tell me. Will I get to meet Jesus? Find out the real colour of his hair? He must look Jewish somehow, I hope so! I am Scandinavian.

    Merry Christmas, in spite of how commercial it is and how it is not at all Jesus’ birthday.

    Gerda.

    1. Dear Gerda, thank you for a delightful comment! You have given me my first grin of the day ;-). I am Scandinavian as well, since all my ancestors came from Denmark to the U.S. at the turn of the 20th century. I was reared to be proud of how not long before my birth the Danes had surrendered to the Germans without a fight, and then King Christian X himself had put on the Jewish star and ridden his bike around Copenhagen so everyone could see it. Thus led and inspired, the Danish farmers and fishermen under cover of night had proceeded to save most of the Danish Jews. I don’t know how much of this story is true, but it has made me fiercely proud of a little country I have never seen!

      And yes, Jesus is quoted as having talked about “sin,” but of course after sixty years of stories being passed down orally before being transcribed and then two linguistic translations we really can’t literally trust any individual thing that Jesus is quoted in a modern English translation of the Gospels as having said. Then when we think we have worked out what He probably said, we’ve got to dig further and figure out whether He MEANT that, or whether He was using one of the several verbal tricks that He routinely used to sneak truths past the Temple guards who were always watching and listening. I’ll talk next week about how we get past all of this, since these problems are germane to what I think I will be ready by then to talk about. Sin. What do you and I actually hear Him saying about sin as we sit together at His feet? And even beyond that, what does what we hear Him saying have to tell us about what He is thinking?

      What Jesus really looked like on earth is an interesting question that won’t be answered, I’m afraid, even when you meet Him in person (as you will, if that is important to you). Every account I ever have read from people who have returned home that even mentions His appearance describes the long-haired ascetic with a short beard of our longstanding imagination. There seems to be a thing where children who are greeted by Jesus meet a blond version with blue eyes who is gentle and always laughing, but for the most part His hair is brown and His eyes are hazel.

      Not long after Liberating Jesus was published in 2015, I was given the gift of remembering having attended a meeting with Jesus the previous night as my body slept. It was in the paneled conference room where I generally meet with my guides. He and I sat across the table from one another at the center of it, with at least a dozen others to our right and left. It was hard for me to look at Him! He radiated an intensity that I now realize was love – it was positive – but I felt it as a kind of scorching from being too near a source of too much energy. He was speaking, intense, and looking to right and left but barely glancing at me. I assume that was because He knew I was overwhelmed by Him. From what I recall, His hair was shoulder-length and brown and His eyes were hazel, but His looking this way could have been for my benefit. He could choose to look as He liked, and a being anywhere near His level of spiritual development would seldom appear in physical form.

      After that glimpse, I generally capitalize His pronouns….

      1. It is all true about saving the majority of the Danish Jews. Not just by fishermen and farmers, but doctors hiding them in hospitals, their precious religious items hidden in churches. Ordinary citizens rushing about to warn them, ticked off by a German official, who must not have been in sympathy with Hitler. He told a Danish politician about the imminent raid, and when the SS came to most homes, the birds had flown.
        I found a wonderful paperback about it, here in Australia, many years ago. I was only a school girl in Copenhagen.
        The King, yes he rode his horse in the mornings, right outside our windows, protected only by two police on their horses. I waited and shouted, mum here comes the King.
        But he did not wear a yellow star, that is a (nice) myth. He is supposed to have said if the Danish citizens, happening to be Jewish, was forced to wear a star, he would wear one too. Maybe he said that. Actually, no Jews wore a star in Denmark. Hitler had a soft spot for Denmark and our dairy products. Still, it is remarkable that the Jewish citizens escaped both the star and all the rest of it. Only the ones who did not believe SS would be coming and did not get out in time got taken to concentration camps.

        (H. C. Andersen became great friends with the Family Melchior, who housed him and looked after him in his last years.)

        Much has changed in the world since.

        After I clicked send last night I thought there is one big question which I am curious about: Did Jesus die on the cross or was he only in a coma? We read that his legs were not broken, like the custom was.

        Where did I read recently that Joseph of Arimethea who provided the grave was actually his rich uncle who owned tin mines I think it was in England, like tintagle and all that. In Jesus’ youth he took him with him on many journeys all over the known world.

        Now, WHERE did I read that? If you know it, please tell me, if not and I find it, I will tell you.

        Has anybody been more spun in myths than Jesus?

        Gerda.

        1. I love this, Gerda! You know the story too! You were there!! Although I’m disappointed that the King wasn’t riding around on his bicycle with the Jewish star pinned to his chest. As a child, I could see him: picturesque streets, the King waving and ringing his bike bell and everyone hustling their Jewish friends down to the boats that would take them to Norway while the stupid German soldiers stood around watching the King do his thing. It’s not surprising that my parents got some details wrong, since they were U.S.-born; but they had close ties to a thriving Danish immigrant community in nearby Worcester, MA, which I’m sure is where the story came from.

          Yes, Jesus’s body did die on the cross and then He re-animated his corpse. That is what all the evidence suggests, and I see no reason to doubt it. Oddly, the Shroud of Turin has an astonishing image scorched into it that could have been produced when that re-animation happened! I don’t know much about Joseph of Arimathea, and I think in fact that there are a few theories about him. He seems to have been a wealthy supporter of the Lord’s, and a very good man, which always has been enough for me!

          1. The Danish royals have ridden bikes in the past. The present known prince and his wife and four kids do sometimes. His wife Mary is from Tasmania where I live now.

            Anyway, here is a website about Joseph of Arimethea and tin mines. That is not where I first read it though.

            Gerda.

  3. We were made in God’s image. What does that mean?
    Dip your cup into the ocean. What you have in your cup is NOT the ocean. But, its the same stuff.
    Fill your bucket with sand from the desert. What you have in your bucket is NOT the desert. But, its the same stuff.
    God place a little piece of himself in each one of us. No, we are NOT God. But, its the same stuff.
    We are a SPIRIT wearing an “Earth Suit”.

    1. Thank you, Joe! Great analogy. We are indeed “a SPIRIT wearing an”Earth Suit,” and we might go further and say that earth-suit also is composed of Spirit. Everything we believe exists is of Spirit! I have lately come to suspect based on evidence that God isn’t just a bit of us, but rather there is nothing of us whatsoever that is not God. All the imperfections we bear that are not God are not you or me either, as we happily discover when we manage to get past most of our own earth-based delusions. And there is in fact no separation at all, anywhere and ever in Spirit, but rather every perceived separation is a human-caused illusion. That cup of water IS the ocean! As we say in A Course in Miracles, “In truth, there is only one of us here.”

  4. Dear Roberta,
    Having really only just started out on A Course in Miracles it seems to me that it is going to give me a turbulent ride!
    My original question to you a week back was regarding Jesus’ words “I came not to bring peace but a sword / division”. From this sprang the Marianne Williamson Wrecking Ball debate. Today I find in ACIM the words “These are some of the examples of upside-down thinking in the New Testament, although its gospel is really only the message of love. If the Apostles had not felt guilty, they never could have quoted me as saying, “I come not to bring peace but a sword.” This is clearly the opposite of everything I taught”. So it appears that Jesus himself is saying that these famous words were never even his! I do not regret my question as it prompted a lively and interesting debate, but it does seem that the experts and authorities on ACIM sometimes express quite startling views. The words of another well recognized ‘authority’, David Hoffmeister, also grabbed my attention a couple of days ago:
    “Everyone is familiar with the Jesus story. Public ministry, a crucifixion and a resurrection scene. But what they never told us, the preachers and the ministers, was that the resurrection occurred before crucifixion. Before crucifixion? Before?
    Yes, John baptized Jesus and a dove flew down and landed on Jesus’ head. And a Voice spoke and said “This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.” Did you ever notice what happened after that scene? Jesus started going around talking to people in a very different tone. “Before Abraham was, I Am.” Does that sound like a human being to you? “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father but through me.” Does that sound like a human being? Jesus’ mind was resurrected before his public ministry. And that little skit at the end of his earth ‘life’ was such a tiny little skit. It was like, “Well, we have to leave an example. What kind of a skit can we do? Judas, here, we want you to play this part. Here we’ll get some silver for you. But whatever you do, let’s do it quickly, let’s get this over with. We are going to make it a quick little skit.”
    Jesus was telling the Apostles exactly what was going to happen before it would happen.
    “When the temple is torn down it will be rebuilt in three days.” Hmmm, resurrection. Jesus knew exactly what the script was. There was no betrayal. This was just a bunch of characters acting out a skit to demonstrate innocence, sinlessness”.
    OK, so it is already pretty well recognized that the Christian version of a crucifixion of his own innocent son in order to appease God’s wrath at the sins of mankind, is pretty far off the mark. But “such a tiny little skit” ??? Can you relate to these words?
    Then again, I wrote to you 2 months ago for advice, following the attempted murder in which I was shot through the face and shoulder. In ACIM today, I found words that seem to give an answer: “You have probably reacted for years as if you were being crucified. This is a marked tendency of the separated, who always refuse to consider what they have done to themselves. Projection means anger, anger fosters assault, and assault promotes fear. The real meaning of the crucifixion lies in the apparent intensity of the assault of some of the Sons of God upon another. This, of course, is impossible, and must be fully understood as impossible. Otherwise, I cannot serve as a model for learning.
    Assault can ultimately be made only on the body. There is little doubt that one body can assault another, and can even destroy it. Yet if destruction itself is impossible, anything that is destructible cannot be real. Its destruction, therefore, does not justify anger. To the extent to which you believe that it does, you are accepting false premises and teaching them to others. The message the crucifixion was intended to teach was that it is not necessary to perceive any form of assault in persecution, because you cannot be persecuted. If you respond with anger, you must be equating yourself with the destructible, and are therefore regarding yourself insanely”.
    In hospital I did not feel anger as such – if any negative emotions arose I internally repeated “om mani padme hum” until calm spread over me. I previously often said that everything should be experienced in life at least once. My thoughts in hospital were “well it is an experience … not one that I want to repeat, but, none the less, an experience”.
    After hospital I found myself starting to explain in court and elsewhere that I had been “persecuted” … it turns out that according to ACIM, if I perceive that I was ‘persecuted’ then I am equating myself with the destructible and am therefore regarding myself insanely. It seems, therefore, that it is not a matter of forgiving or otherwise … as destruction is impossible, just false premises – and therefore nothing to forgive.

  5. Dear Roberta … may I ask 2 more questions please?
    (1) In ACIM it is clearly written that “the script is written”. The future is done, over, gone – it cannot be changed – it is not interactive. David Hoffmeister also writes that this can explain why psychics and Nostradamus could predict the future – because they were just reading the Akashic records of the past! I started to see regular nightmares about my attempted murder when I was 11 years old (1970), including the teeth that were blown out by the bullets and trying to push the teeth back into my jaw – hoping that they would re-take … which I did do that night … yet the attempted murder only occurred in 2014. After the shooting the nightmare never returned. Is the “script” of our futures indeed “written”? How does this relate to “free choice” … or is the free choice the choice to atone and alter the past … which in a sense is also the future?!
    (2) Everyday this week I have contemplated different part of my “ego” with a view to atonement. Yesterday in morning meditation I asked what aspect I should contemplate that day. I received the abrupt words. “What you took, put back in place”.
    I took this to be two-fold in meaning … both wherein I have received love and not given back in equal measure … and also wherein I took money and did not / was not able to return it due to a dramatic change in life circumstances. I do not have the money to return it at this time – but even if I did, persons from whom I took money have already transitioned. How can I make atonement / amends in such circumstance? I cannot find guidance in ACIM on this point.

    1. Wow, there’s a lot here to unpack, Alexandra! Let’s address some points that you make as they jump out at me:

      1) The not-peace-but-a-sword language actually may have been legitimate, since Jesus knew that what He was teaching was going to bring what He called the Tribulation (see my blog posts of 8/31, 9/6, and 9/12 of this year). He didn’t come to sow discord on purpose, in other words, but He knew it was coming. He likely wanted to prepare people for it.

      2) I don’t agree with David Hoffmeister’s take at all! Like so many, he is over-thinking and adding a modern human layer to what is really much simpler, more rooted in place and time, and and more completely based in love. For example: (a) “This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased” was God’s public blessing of His Son with His approval. My Boy is turning out well! Any parent would relate to that. (b) That all happened at the very start of His ministry, so after that – with Dad’s approval, of course – naturally He spoke with more authority! “Before Abraham was, I Am,” does indeed sound like a human being, since we now know that “Before Abraham was,” you were as well. We are all eternal beings. (c) He was misquoted in the third case; what he said was, “MY TEACHINGS ARE the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father but through MY TEACHINGS.” Certainly sounds human to me! Moreover, we can confirm now that it is absolutely true. As for the rest, you cannot assume that ANY of what Jesus is quoted as having said was actually said by him, including anything that seems prophetic. The Council of Nicaea messed with it all in an effort to build a more solid religion that in fact has nothing to do with Jesus. I will show you in future weeks how to tell what Jesus likely said and didn’t say, but in the end it is a judgment call.

      3) Calling the story of the life of Jesus “a quick little skit” is a horrendous insult to the Man, and to God. Good grief.

      4) And as for the rest, please don’t take bits from ACIM and overthink them into your own situation! The Course is useful ONLY when it is done as a whole course, and using bits taken out of it creates a classic case of “a little bit of knowledge is a dangerous thing.”

    2. Alexandra,

      1) I don’t know where you found that bit about the script being already written, but I can tell you to what it probably refers. The ACIM creation story is that all is perfect spiritual joy, love, and light, and then “into the mind of the Son of God came a tiny, mad idea at which the Son of God forgot to laugh.” That idea was the possibility of separation within Spirit. And because Spirit is infinitely powerful, separation then actually happened! God ended it instantly, but in non-time that separated part of God created the universe, the astral, everything that we believe is real. Because time was part of what was created in that separated micro-instant, the separated part of God believes that we are still out here! But we are not, In reality, all of us are long since reunited with the Source. So from the perspective of eternity, there is no time and all has long since ended; but from our perspective, within the time that came into being with the universe, indeed we do have free will, make decisions, goof up, and so on.

      2) The way to slay the ego is emphatically NOT to dwell on aspects of it!! The best way to slay the ego is to grow spiritually until you bump up against the ego’s comfort zone, and then bust right through that. The ego will scare you to death before it succumbs, making you think that you are dying; but if you soldier on, it will die. I worry that doing what you are doing feeds a nasty gremlin that should not be fed! And if you feel guilty about something, then figure out a way to atone for it; but if you don’t feel guilty, then bless it and let it go. I suspect that the voice you heard came to you because you do feel guilty; in which case, you should go through radical forgiveness exercises and forgive yourself!

  6. In the books written about Jane Roberts who claimed to be channeling an entity who called himself “Seth,”, he (Seth) mentioned that guides and higher beings often took on the persona of a famous religious figure such as Buddha, Jesus etc. and appeared in that form, usually to dying people. This would account for the many different physical appearances of Jesus, as it wasn’t actually Jesus that they saw. You were right, Roberta, when you mentioned that the many translations over the years combined with the fact that Jesus had to be very careful with his words due to the temple guards, make it nearly impossible to find out what Jesus actually said or meant.

    1. Yes, Lola, there is quite a bit of evidence that our guides and their friends will on occasion take on the appearance of a religious figure you will trust and appear in that form at your deathbed. The whole purpose of deathbed visitors is to give you someone you trust who can help you raise your vibration and get you through to the entry level of our post-death reality, and if it is judged that it is going to take Jesus or Buddha to do it for you, then “that” is who is going to show up!

      And I thought it was just about impossible to know what Jesus meant to say, but actually there are some good ways to weed out what He did NOT say… then from there the rest can be largely figured out. It’s not perfect, but it’s really not bad!

  7. How about learning to love ourselves as human and as extensions of our Source? As we experience deepened compassion for ourselves, we naturally extend it to others. We have the capacity to create our families and our cultures based in love and compassion and not fear. We’re all creative beings expanding the universe through our imaginative capacity and then via our physical experiences and manifestations. We’re a part of evolving life as we know it, each of us an integral part.

    1. Oh Jeffrey, for all of humankind to learn to love themselves and others is the only thing that is going to be able to uplift and transform the world! But although a lot of people want it, and some have tried to make it happen,there are forces of negativity so powerful that no effort to re-base any culture that ever has existed in love rather than in power and fear has been stable for long. That is why our freeing the teachings of Jesus from Christianity and teaching them as a secular movement is so important! Those teachings DO have the power to transform us and to transform the world. We’ll be talking more about that in coming weeks. Christianity as it is practiced now is anathema to love and compassion, but the teachings of Jesus are the easiest and most rapid method for raising our own spiritual vibrations and those of others that ever has been devised!

  8. Hi Roberta,

    If Jesus had wanted to teach about sacrificial death and atonement, etc. he would have! If that were what he came to teach he certainly missed a lot of opportunities to teach it! Like the Prodigal Son parable. There is no mention of the good and proper son having to take punishment that the wastrel son deserved. It’s just so clear that Jesus never heard of that abominable doctrine. I wish more Christians would simple read the gospels straight through instead of “proof texting.”

    Harlan

    1. All perfectly wonderful points, Harlan! As you point out, not only did Jesus never mention the concept of sacrificial redemption (some Christians call it substitutionary atonement) – and if He had ever heard of it He would have mentioned it, especially if it were part of His plan! – but the whole concept is in violent conflict with everything that Jesus taught. But Christians don’t read or even care about what Jesus taught. Absolutely amazing, but true!

    1. Merry Christmas and much love to you, dear Mike, and to everyone who is reading these words, especially to those who grace us by occasionally sharing their thoughts in these comments!

      Our next Fun book will be out early in 2019, and it will follow on these blog posts. It’s called The Fun of Loving Jesus – Embracing the Christianity That Jesus Taught. It should have been out this fall, but life intervened! Then in the fall of next year will come The Fun of Being Free – Using the American Dream to Heal the World. It’s an emphatically un-political book, and I’m having a lot of fun with it!

  9. “He meant to eradicate as incompatible with human spiritual growth the whole notion of sin. He meant to throw away not just the word, but the entire concept!” Agreed
    “But Christians don’t read or even care about what Jesus taught. Absolutely amazing, but true!” You cast a really broad net, here.
    Sorry, but your whole approach has turned me off. I believe we need to pray for everyone, including our leaders whom we may not like, but I believe God loves us all. I haven’t the time or patience for this. Goodbye, Roberta

    1. You know, Betty, it amazes me to realize that I think yours is the first comment of this sort I have ever received. People defending science used to attack me with fair regularity, but I cannot recall a single religious person who has done so. Isn’t that odd, when you think about it? My working theory has been that no one still firm in the religion even reads what I write, but I am grateful indeed that you have done so! And I am happy to approve and respond to your comment. I apologize in advance that this may read something like an analysis of the genus Christianus, but we hear from so few here who feel as you do!

      Betty, that you have agreed that Jesus came to eradicate the entire notion of sin is astonishing. If you agree with this, then I assume that you do not believe that Jesus died for your sins? I wish we could talk about this in person – I would love to know how this works in your mind!

      You have neatly caught me out: I did cast too broad a net when I said that Christians don’t read or care about what Jesus taught. That was a cheap shot, and thanks to you I will be more careful from now on. The problem actually is that practicing Christians have to read the Gospels selectively, and have to gloss over parts of them; and they do that. For decades I would read the Gospels through – I did that repeatedly into my fifties – and come to things the Lord had said that made me wince. As you point out, what I should have said was something like “Few Christians put any emphasis on the importance of the teachings of Jesus.” That was true of me as a traditional Christian, and it must be true of many others or churches would themselves take those teachings more seriously. In every church I ever have attended, the headline was that Jesus died for our sins and He was an example of human perfection; but the fact that He told us we are to be “perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect” (MT 5:48) was never mentioned. No need for that in Christianity, since the goal there is just to get into heaven and we can do that by claiming that Jesus’s substitutionary atonement includes us. So easy!

      Now here is your cheap shot at me, Betty. You have decided to reject everything I might ever say in future based upon your assumption that I would disagree with this sentence: “I believe we need to pray for everyone, including our leaders whom we may not like, but I believe God loves us all.” Where on earth in anything I ever have said or written have you found any evidence that I would disagree with that sentence? Any evidence at all? In fact, I would wholeheartedly agree with the very sentence you are sure I would reject, and I would hope that others who are reading this will know that is true without my having to say it! “God loves us all” is every thought I have and every word I write.

      Actually, thought, I don’t “pray for” people or events in the usual sense. Jesus tells us that isn’t necessary, and perhaps what Jesus says about prayer should be another blog post? I don’t pray for outcomes. When my cherished older daughter was in a car crash that they told us she probably would not survive, I spent a night on my knees thanking God for her life and giving her back into God’s arms but never once did I beg God to give her back to me. To this day, I believe that might have been why God did let us keep her here with us and last night my beautiful, brilliant child shared with us another Christmas Eve. So I don’t pray for our leaders, but I do surround them with love and light; and in particular I have tremendous compassion for Christian clergy! I identify with their problems more than you know, as they watch their churches empty out. They are like the scientists who must spend their lives working in a materialist orthodoxy even though many of them know or suspect that their discipline has gone off-track. Clergymen who love Jesus have the same problem, don’t they? Whatever their denomination might be, it is their job to adhere to it no matter what they might think personally, and I have to believe that Jesus is calling to many of them now, as He is calling to you and me.

      Betty, I wish that your reason for rejecting everything I ever might say in future had been something that I actually ever have said, but I am grateful that you have given us your thoughts. I have a feeling I am going to think of you often in future, as I try to rein in my zeal and express myself a bit more gently!

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