January 24, 2006
I am turning 40 in a week
I am turning 40 in a week and have been thinking about where I am, where I've been, etc. My initial feelings are disappointment, sadness and fear. I don't feel I've done anything significant and my life is half over. I have battled with depression all my life and I understand that has been a hinderance, but not an excuse for being rudderless. I appreciate the things I've been able to do and see in my life. I've been very lucky. But its time to take on a mission, a purpose. I have a deep spiritual sense, love the arts, and am fascinated with the intricacies of the human experience. I also have a lousy relationship with money and have often been unemployed in the last 5 years. I need the miracle of clarity and direction.
San Jose, CA
+++++++ Marianne's Response++++++
So here's the deal. From the perspective of A Course in Miracles, each of us has a split mind. One part is still in touch with God, and therfore sees only Truth. From its point of view all that has ever happened in your life is that you have loved and been loved. That is all that has happened. Everything else has been an illusion. Any straying from love in your life has simply been a mistake to be corrected, a mental miscreation.
But then there is another part of the mind, which has split itself on from God and engages in constant, illusionary, hallucinatory thought. Its cornerstone perception is guilt. And to it, your life has been a total waste. You're forty -- and look at you, for God's sake: You're nothing. You've done nothing. You are a failure. You've hardly worked, etc.
So there you have it: two separate worlds, arising from two different perceptions of who you are and the meaning of your existence. The first one is approving of you and compassionate towards you, emphasizes love as the meaning of your existence, and acknowledges you have made mistakes yet assures you that their correction is built into the workings of a merciful universe. Its goal for you, and for everyone else, is inner peace.
The second is the ego's domain: the goal of its existence is, quite literally, hell on earth for you and others. Anxiety and despair are its normal states. And its worldview so pervades this planet that you and I and everyone else has been taught its principles, schooled in its guilt-ridden perceptions, and held strictly accountable for holding to its tenets. The slightest deviation will get you labeled nut-case, in denial, fuzzy brained or lightweight.
Two worlds. Your choice. You decide.
A miracle is a shift in perception -- from hellish toughts of fear, to heavenly thoughts of love. And according to your perceptions of life will your experience of life.
Now at this point, given the fact that you wrote in asking for a miracle, I assume you would like me to speak about the heavenly choice and how to achieve it.
In A Course in Miracles, the Holy Spirit is referred to as a "bridge of perception." The first thing you need to do is build your bridge. I would recommend the daily reading of A Course in Miracles -- particularly the power of working the daily exercises -- as a way to discipline your mind and build a more loving, less guilt-ridden thought system. Right now you carry your thought forms like an invisible sign, subconsciously signaling to others that you're not a major player.
Secondly, I would write down on a piece of paper five things you have done right in your life. Then write five ways you feel you could powerfully contribute to the world right now, and moving for-ward (whether or not they would earn you money is at this point irrelevent). Then write five things you have to be grateful for, and give thanks. Pray for a chance to make up for what you perceive to be "lost time." Remember the line in the Bible where God assures us, "I will return to you the years that the locusts have eaten." The locusts are all those ego thoughts that rid us of our productivity, our creativity and our joy. But as it says in A Course in Miracles, "God will outwit your self-hatred." And He will.
Now write a letter to God, telling him all the ways you loathe yourself and feel totally frigthened about the future. Unburden yourself completely. Ask Him to help you forgive yourself for not having treated yourself, and life around you, with greater respect. For not having taken full advantage of the opportunities you have been given. For not having shown up fully as a man and as a human being.
And more than anything else, tell God you are willing-- and commit within yourself -- to make right whatever you can that needs to be made right, making amends, settling accounts you owe on any level, and cleaning up the past. Pray for a second chance, for a new beginning. Allow yourself to feel your pain, your regret, your despair. And cry your tears. You need to.
Then get moving. Be a big man. Be a friend to the men around you. Take care of the women and children around you. Contribute to your community. Help save America. Get the energy moving. You get a short period to indulge your pain and self-pity. Then get going. The universe supports you. God loves you. I believe in you, and so does everyone else who is reading this.
Posted by mwblog at January 24, 2006 10:36 AM