I do not know the way to you

(Just back from visiting my daughter in Seattle and thought I’d share this excerpt from my new book, Forgiveness: The Key to Happiness, along with October news from the Foundation for A Course in Miracles, including announcements about two new audios and a keepsake anthology! I’m also posting a new audio with CA Brooks, 12Radio, in which we talk about A Course in Miracles workbook lesson 131: “No one can fail who seeks to reach the truth” — a message I certainly can’t hear enough! 🙂 Hope you enjoy!)

Kayleigh in carrierMy little dog Kayleigh had been up six times during the night, apparently again suffering from the mysterious intestinal distress that had plagued her entire puppyhood, threatening her tiny, little life back then. Damn. It was Sunday, my only day off this week. I’d been looking forward to a lunch with friends, but apparently my curriculum had shifted overnight. I called the after-hours vet, was told to bring my dog in, and warned to expect a long wait.

I shot the lunch hostess a quick email explaining the situation, grabbed a Course book written by a friend I’d been struggling to find time to read, wiggled a weak and wary Kayleigh into her little parka, and blundered out into the single-digit morning air, cup of Joe instantly chilling in my hand. At the pet hospital, we weighed all 5.8 pounds of my darling doggie in. We waited on a hard bench a while–Kayleigh burrowed in my jacket—before the receptionist whisked us into a private exam room to wait some more.

Kayleigh stared up at me with her ancient eyes and shuddered. She remembered this place all too well from those early days when we’d camped out here regularly, the cold metal exam table, the cavernous torture chamber waiting behind those steel doors from which, even now, the cries of fellow poked and prodded pets emanated. I had failed to intervene as she had hoped back then, too. She buried her muzzle in the crook of my elbow.

I had hoped at this point to close my eyes, breathe deeply, and check in with our inner teacher about the rubrics for this current pop quiz but found it difficult to do so because of the video playing on the open computer screen on the counter. A treatise on all you ever wanted to know about canine dental disease and so much more streaming nonstop for patient and human parental enrichment. Triggering waves of guilt about my continuing failure to brush Kayleigh’s teeny weenie teeth on a regular basis, as I’d been instructed to do, way back when.

After a while, a nurse came in, interrogated me about Kayleigh’s condition, and vanished, leaving us to contemplate the vile consequences of advanced periodontal disease that might have been avoided by a responsible pet Mama’s faithful brushing. I turned on my phone and checked my emails. The lunch’s hostess was urging me to come if we got out of the vet’s in time. I glanced at my watch. An hour and a half had already transpired; the festivities would commence in an hour, and I hadn’t even taken a shower yet.

I had been here before. Early on in my A Course in Miracles practice I caught myself trying to make living the Course my life’s work by sequestering myself in my office, the better to immerse myself in its teachings. Completely forgetting that whatever appeared to be happening in the classroom of my life was my work, the complicated relationships that lay just outside the closed door were my curriculum. I would not find my way home by merely studying the big, blue book and then isolating myself with a handful of other Course students who shared my understanding of it, but by learning to extend the unwavering kindness it teaches to everyone and everything wandering this world secretly frightened and alone.

I recalled complaining to my beloved external teacher Ken Wapnick (in one of my interviews with him) about why I couldn’t seem to catch a break from the unrelenting forgiveness lessons seemingly bombarding me at warp speed. He’d responded by quoting (internationally renowned priest and author) Henri Nouwen, who had said something like, “I kept getting interrupted in my work and then I realized my interruptions were my work.”

Ken often reminds us not to make the Course our life–attempting to avoid the troubling, messy situations, problems, and relationships that trigger us–but rather to live our lives fully, assigning them the new purpose of healing our mistaken belief that anything outside our mind could disturb or enhance our peace. Learning to forgive my misguided wish to have my day go my way rather than allowing it to reveal my only real wish: remembering our one, united identity by changing my mind about the purpose of my interactions with others.  Learning to recognize every seeming call for love as my own and respond with the gentle compassion I am always truly seeking as I join with our inner teacher of forgiveness, who sees only our shared interest of remembering our unaltered union within.

In my lap Kayleigh gazed up at me with such longing. I nestled her back into my jacket and held her close. She had been troubled lately by my daughter’s coming and going, the packing to return to college following winter break already well underway, our family’s preoccupation with work and social obligations that left us charging off in different directions without her. But her sickness had drawn me back in. Like my human daughter, Kayleigh did not always find it easy to accept my affection, but she did so now, rolling on her back and offering up her upset belly for comfort and adoration.

I turned off and put away my phone, slipped the book I had hoped to begin back into my purse, and merely held her, stroking her soft fur and warming her paws in my hand. Another hour came and went yielding additional, fascinating insights on canine dental disease. The exam and tests eventually revealed bacterial and parasitic issues requiring the usual medications. I paid the bill, bundled my dog back up, and headed back out into the cold, grateful again to be happily wrong about, well; I suppose that would be everything.

“And so today we do not choose the way in which we go to Him. But we do choose to let Him come. And with this choice we rest. And in our quiet hearts and open minds, His Love will blaze its pathway of itself. What has not been denied is surely there, if it be true and can be surely reached. God knows His Son, and knows the way to him. He does not need His Son to show Him how to find His way. Through every opened door His Love shines outward from its home within, and lightens up the world in innocence.” (A Course in Miracles workbook lesson 189, paragraph 9)

It has never been easier to avail ourselves of the Foundation for A Course in Miracles’ mind-healing programs! The Foundation continues to offer the most profoundly transforming classes in how to fully understand and truly live A Course in Miracles’ principles. I have been attending these classes via live streaming and they are once again taking me to a deeper, more honest and healing place with my practice. Take a look at the programs available in the next few months http://www.facim.org/temecula-schedule.aspx  and consider signing up for a class in Temecula, or attend in the comfort of your own home (or watch later) through the crystal-clear live, online streaming option. I could not recommend this experience more highly!

And … I’m so excited about two just-released, previously unpublished AUDIOS of Ken’s  (details below) and the soon-to-be released From the Lighthouse ANTHOLOGY (see below)! I understand this will be a beautifully bound, keepsake-style book Ken’s students will want to savor, treasure, and return to again and again. 

More news from The Foundation for A Course in Miracles:

The Foundation is pleased to announce the availability of two previously unpublished audio titles by Dr. Kenneth Wapnick. “Appearance versus Reality” and Forgiveness: “A Many-Splendored Thing,” are both available in CD, MP3-CD, and MP3 Downloadable formats.

COMING IN TWO WEEKS!
Due to popular demand, From The Lighthouse, an anthology of articles written by Kenneth and Gloria Wapnick, will be published as an 8 1/2 x 11 hardcover book (520 pages). These articles were published in The Lighthouse quarterly newsletter of the Foundation, begun in 1990, with continuous publication through its final issue in March 2014. The book will be available in mid-October 2015.

The Foundation is now offering thirty-three CD and MP3-CD titles for sale at 40% off the regular price through the month of October. (Downloadable MP3s are not included). These sale items are different from those offered in September. Take a look at what is available here. This will take you to a listing of titles with links to the products included in this sale.

In October, the Foundation will be presenting a Two-Day Academy, “The Call to Awaken and Be Glad”: Opportunities to Gladden Yourself. The Academy will be conducted by Dr. Jeffrey Seibert and Dr. Rosemarie LoSasso, and will be held on Tuesday, October 6 and Wednesday, October 7, from 10:00 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. – 4:15 p.m.

If you are unable to attend the Two-Day October Academy in person, please join us online via Live Streaming.

Thank you for your continued interest in the Foundations programs and teaching materials.

___________________________________________________________________
My new book, Forgiveness: The Key to Happiness, is available on Amazon in paperback and for Kindle.

Here’s the book description:

In Forgiveness: The Key to HappinessSusan Dugan continues to recount her personal journey in learning to change the purpose of our relationships from rooting ourselves more deeply in a childish dream of separation, to growing up to accept our shared interest in remembering the uninterrupted, eternal love of our true nature. Her deeply poignant, entertaining essays explore how to really live the teachings of A Course in Miracles, learning to view our lives as a classroom in which we encounter a better way of relating to each other through the inner teacher of forgiveness instead of sin, guilt, and fear. By making our relationship with our inner teacher the most important thing, we discover how to honor the power of everyone’s decision-making mind by connecting with our own, recognizing our own mind in need of healing in our desire to fix, change, and control others. Ultimately realizing, through moment-to-moment practice, how to relate to all there is from a healed perspective beyond guilt, blame, and need.

CA Brooks, 12Radio, and I share a few laughs and discuss how heavily supported we are on this sometimes rocky-seeming journey home in this NEW recording (part 1 of 2) on A Course in Miracles workbook lesson 131: “No one can fail who seeks to reach the truth.” http://www.12radio.com/archive.cfm?archive=06501260-26B9-4187-86DD2A2074C264D3

I will be speaking Friday, October 16th, at Miracle Share’s 2015 virtual conference, “Awakening Through the Workbook,” along with many other A Course in Miracles teachers speaking that weekend. Please learn how to join us by clicking here: http://www.miracleshareconference.org/join-us/?ap_id=112192

Here’s a recent video talk Bruce Rawles and I did about “The Little Willingness” section of A Course in Miracles’ Text, in Chapter 18. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nW_qNsz9yVU

HALF-HOUR, FORTY-FIVE MINUTE, OR HOUR-LONG ACIM MENTORING SESSIONS AVAILABLE: Although A Course in Miracles is clearly a self-study program and the one relationship we are truly cultivating is with our eternally sane and loving right mind, mentoring can help remind Course students having trouble applying its unique forgiveness in the classroom of their lives that the problem and the solution never lie in the difficult relationship, situation, behavior, health issue, etc., but in the decision-making mind. In every circumstance, without exception, we can choose to experience inner peace and kindness toward all, unaffected by the seemingly random strife of a world designed to prove otherwise. By choosing to look at our lives as a classroom in which we bring all our painful illusions to the inner teacher of forgiveness who knows only our shared innocence beyond all its deceptive disguises, we learn to identify and transcend the ego’s resistance, hold others and even ourselves harmless, and gently allow our split mind to heal. Sessions are conducted via traditional phone or Skype (your choice). Please contact me to find out if mentoring is right for you before submitting a payment. (No one is ever turned away for lack of ability to pay!)

The Denver-based School for A Course in Miracles (formerly the School of Reason), an A Course-in-Miracles teaching organization, has a beautiful new website: http://www.schoolforacourseinmiracles.org/, with information on great new and ongoing classes based on Ken Wapnick’s teachings.

In the San Francisco Bay Area, the Center for A Course in Miracles http://www.centerforacourseinmiracles.org/index.html, is an educational Center whose focus is to teach what A Course in Miracles says, address common misunderstandings, and help students develop a relationship with their internal Teacher, inspired and guided by the teachings of the late Dr. Kenneth Wapnick.

The Interviews page on my forays website been revised to make it easier to find and access interviews with Ken Wapnick and others including Gloria Wapnick, and FACIM staff teachers.

In this recent video Bruce Rawles and I discuss themes from my new book, Forgiveness: The Key to Happinesshttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3vEbI3jH8Sk 

My good friend and fellow Course student, teacher, and author Bruce Rawles frequently invites me to chat with him on YouTube about the Course and Ken Wapnick’s teachings. He continues to compile lots of great ACIM information well worth checking out at ACIMblog.com.

My good friend and gifted A Course in Miracles teacher and writer Bernard Groom has been posting beautifully written, heartfelt essays about living A Course in Miracles for years at ACIMvillage.com. Bernard lives and teaches in France with his dear wife Patricia. You’ll find a wealth of information in French on his website including recorded talks available for purchase or free download.

My previous ACIM essay collections, Forgiveness Offers Everything I Want and Extraordinary Ordinary Forgiveness  are available on Amazon in both paperback and kindle versions. If you read and find any of these books helpful, I would greatly appreciate you posting a brief (a sentence or two is fine) review on Amazon.

Comments

  1. Perfect timing; just what I needed to read today; thanks! “Completely forgetting that whatever appeared to be happening in the classroom of my life was my work” … Those interruptions (of ego’s misguided plans for salvation) are indeed my classroom and only a prison when I’m trying to interpret the projected dream “on my own”. MUCH appreciated! 🙂

  2. Thank you, Bruce! 🙂

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