This Holy Child remains with you

Childhood 3The ringing that roused me from a rare, deep sleep that early Sunday morning seemed so far away with my earplugs in and the white-noise thrum of the air conditioner. I stumbled out of bed, disoriented, moving blindly in the darkness toward the dresser against the wall where I kept our mobile landline to prevent its glow and wires from disturbing my easily rattled and distracted insomniac brain. As I located the phone, my eyes registered the time on the digital clock beside it—3:17 a.m.—along with the name on the caller ID: “Central Station.”  My body froze.

3:17 a.m. 

“Central Station.”

Time ground to that peculiar, nauseating halt I recalled from a serious car accident I’d suffered as a teenager as I evaluated this sensory data, as if from outside my body, simultaneously recalling the whereabouts of my twenty-three-year-old daughter currently attending a large weekend music festival a couple hours outside her home in Seattle. She and her boyfriend had driven there Friday; texted me photos of their campsite at sunset, additional pictures of multiple bands jamming on a gigantic stage to a seemingly endless expanse of young people sprawled on the impossibly green grass, just hours ago.

The phone rang again.

My hand reached for it, and stalled. Paralyzed by the probable implications and nature of a call emanating from a place called “Central Station” in the middle of what might turn out to be the darkest of all possible nights. Fearing the absolute worst and absolutely certain I would not, could not, survive it, I drew my hand back from the sound, as if singed, as the phone rang once more, before falling silent. And I waited, breath held, seconds masquerading as the longest of all hours, for the caller to leave a message, before lifting the phone that had suddenly quadrupled in weight to my ear, to play it back in a dire daze. Absolutely certain I would not, could not survive what my ears were about to hear, my brain attempt to register.

A woman’s voice informed me she was calling from a home alarm service that had received multiple medical-emergency calls from the residence of two of our dearest friends, who lived a couple miles away, and had listed us to notify in the event of alarm activation. The alarm company had been unable to reach our friends on their landline or cell phones to ascertain their status. The most profound relief I have ever encountered washed over me as I first struggled to process the information that my daughter’s life had been spared the horrific scenarios my brain had already choreographed, followed by fear over the possibilities of what might have happened to one or both of our friends, followed by a wave of shame over my selfish relief over the fate of my daughter.

I dialed the alarm company back, struggling to remember if our friends, who travel frequently, were currently in or out of town, and spoke with the alarm company representative who reiterated the situation, explaining they had already dispatched paramedics to the “scene.”  I put down the phone and robotically dialed our friends’ landline. This time, one of our friends answered.

She apologized, explaining they’d been having trouble with their alarm system and had a technician to their home the day before to run multiple tests. When the system finally reset itself in the middle of the night, the medical-emergency alarm tests from the previous day had somehow repeated themselves, provoking the alarm company to try to reach our friends to verify the alarms’ validity. Unfortunately, our friends had all their phones turned off, and were, just now, attempting to explain the situation to the first responders who had pulled up in a fire truck outside their house.

Once more unspeakably relieved, I set down the phone, now wide awake, and went back to bed, adrenaline still coursing through my body’s veins, stinging my throat, as I slowly struggled to integrate what had just transpired. As the guilt over realizing (the moment I heard the woman from the alarm company’s explanation for her call) that I would happily have thrown two of my best friends (along with every other body I had ever held dear) under the proverbial bus, if necessary, in exchange for the safety of my daughter, began to fester.

Worse, I realized, with that same sickening, slow-motion sensation from my car accident decades ago, that not once during the last half hour had I so much as remembered for even a nanosecond to ask for help from our loving inner teacher to entertain the possibility that I might be wrong about the cause of my debilitating, life-threatening terror. Nor invited him to help me with the only cause of all fear, according to A Course in Miracles: the present choice to make my errant belief in separation from our source real within. A decision that must inevitably lead to the excruciatingly painful experience of choosing one special relationship over another in a futile effort to substitute for the bottomless lack of love I feel within. All the while expecting the punishment I deserve for throwing God’s love away, existing at his expense, to unexpectedly come calling, Grim Reaper-style, at any given moment.

Suffice it to say I did not fall back to sleep that night, or sleep soundly for days. Although I went through the motions of asking for help from our inner teacher, reminding myself that I was never upset for the reason I think (A Course in Miracles workbook lesson 5) and could see peace instead of this (lesson 34), I nonetheless floundered, more aware of the solitary confinement of having chosen to believe the ego thought system of one-or-the other than ever. Dimly aware, too, that I would nonetheless still rather sacrifice another body in my dream than honestly face and choose against the decision to destroy love I had made real in my mind outside this dream of body vs. body, from which all attachments and aversions to bodies arose.

For days, the realization that I was choosing right now to experience the pain of this belief felt vast, completely overwhelming, a formidable, impenetrable kingdom onto itself, walled and heavily guarded and yet somehow exposed, no longer camouflaged, revealed in all its spectacular, Halloween horror. At last, after awakening once more several days later in the wee hours of the morning, as if powerless not to obey that same old, divisive, retaliating call, I once more begged my inner professor for help, heard only the deafening white noise of my earplugs in collusion with the air conditioner in response, flipped on the nightstand light, opened up the big, blue book in desperation, and read this, from A Course in Miracles Text, Chapter 12 VII., paragraphs 9-10:

“The power of decision is your one remaining freedom as a prisoner of this world. You can decide to see it right. What you made of it is not its reality, for its reality is only what you give it. You cannot really give anything but love to anyone or anything, nor can you really receive anything but love from them. If you think you have received anything else, it is because you have looked within and thought you saw the power to give something else within yourself. It was only this decision that determined what you found, for it was the decision for what you sought.

You are afraid of me because you looked within and are afraid of what you saw. Yet you could not have seen reality, for the reality of your mind is the loveliest of God’s creations. Coming only from God, its power and grandeur could only bring you peace if you really looked upon it. If you are afraid, it is because you saw something that is not there. Yet in that same place you could have looked upon me and all your brothers in the perfect safety of the Mind which created us. For we are there in the peace of the Father, Who wills to extend His peace through you.”

I can’t really say why this terribly lucid passage got through to me in this way, at this time, in this instance, just when I most seemed to need it, suddenly lightening the load of my self-accused transgressions. Enabling me to see I had simply been taking the same “tiny, mad idea” of separation from our source seriously again, instead of joining with Jesus, that memory of our undifferentiated, all-loving union, in smiling at it. Empowering my dreadful illusions by stubbornly insisting on looking at them by myself, thereby deliberately preventing me from seeing beyond the devastation I’d imagined I had wrought to its unreal cause.

And I saw, too, now aware of Jesus’ hand gently resting on my shoulder as it always has, that the child I most feared losing in the guise of my daughter was really the one innocent child in me I think I exchanged for this individual, imposter child we all experience ourselves as when we listen to the harsh inner teacher of separation realized. Whose defensive thirst for revenge can never be appeased. That same frightened, lost, and confused child spoken of so tenderly in A Course in Miracles workbook lesson 182, “I will be still an instant and go home,” stumbling around in a terrifying, alien darkness. Secretly convinced she really did run away from home, slammed the door on her way out in a willful rage, and is no longer welcome back.

But that child in me, and you, and every other body faltering in this world’s darkness is wrong about itself, not evil, just scared, and wrong. And although she has no faith right now whatsoever, I, the decision-making mind, can still comfort instead of condemning her. Can still choose, this very instant, to pick her up, carry her to our older brother, and sit united with him in that still place outside this dreamland of lost and constantly threatened children. Bask in the comfort and joy of his unwavering love and faith in our real enduring, invulnerable worth, and self. In this often painful journey’s nonetheless certain, peaceful, happy ending for all.

“When you are still an instant, when the world recedes from you, when valueless ideas cease to have value in your restless mind, then will you hear His Voice. So poignantly He calls to you that you will not resist Him longer. In that instant He will take you to His home, and you will stay with Him in perfect stillness, silent and at peace, beyond all words, untouched by fear and doubt, sublimely certain that you are at home.

Rest with Him frequently today. For He was willing to become a little Child that you might learn of Him how strong is he who comes without defenses, offering only love’s messages to those who think he is their enemy. He holds the might of Heaven in His hand and calls them friend, and gives His strength to them, that they may see He would be Friend to them. He asks that they protect Him, for His home is far away, and He will not return to it alone.

Christ is reborn as but a little Child each time a wanderer would leave his home. For he must learn that what he would protect is but this Child, Who comes defenseless and Who is protected by defenselessness. Go home with Him from time to time today. You are as much an alien here as He.

Take time today to lay aside your shield which profits nothing, and lay down the spear and sword you raised against an enemy without existence. Christ has called you friend and brother. He has even come to ask your help in letting Him go home today, completed and completely. He has come as does a little child, who must beseech his father for protection and for love. He rules the universe, and yet He asks unceasingly that you return with Him, and take illusions as your gods no more.

You have not lost your innocence. It is for this you yearn. This is your heart’s desire. This is the voice you hear, and this the call which cannot be denied. The holy Child remains with you. His home is yours. Today He gives you His defenselessness, and you accept it in exchange for all the toys of battle you have made. And now the way is open, and the journey has an end in sight at last. Be still an instant and go home with Him, and be at peace a while.” (From A Course in Miracles workbook lesson 182, paragraphs 8-12)

 

Foundation for A Course in Miracles Announcements

Programs through December 2016

Please view our latest Temecula Schedule page https://www.facim.org/temecula-schedule.aspx   to see the Seminars and Academy classes, including Live Streaming of the classes, currently scheduled through December 2016.
You can register for upcoming live and streamed classes (AND GET THE NEW SCHEDULE) taught by the amazingly gifted Foundation for A Course in Miracles teaching staff; who continue to communicate Ken’s teachings with such clarity and grace, here: https://www.facim.org/temecula-schedule.aspx. I really can’t recommend these classes more highly! Rosemarie LoSasso and Jeff Seibert continue to gently encourage us to bring the darkness of all we’ve dreamt up to hurt us (whenever we’re choosing to feel victimized and justified in victimizing others) to the light of the part of every mind that knows only our shared innocence and need to find our way home. Their classes offer us a safe, non-judgmental “space” above the battleground in which to allow the healing of our frightened minds. (And often laugh a lot, too! :))

Latest Audio Releases

The Foundation is pleased to offer two previously unreleased audio titles by Dr. Kenneth Wapnick. The first of these is a five-CD set entitled ” ‘A Hawk from a Handsaw; Discerning the Holy Spirit,” recorded in 2010, and the second is a three-CD set entitled ” The Godspot: Spirit or Body,” recorded in 2006. Both titles are also available as MP3 CDs and MP3 Downloads.

Super Inventory Sale

We are continuing to clear out the warehouse of all printed books as we make the transition to electronic books. After the current supply of books is sold, the books will not be reprinted, and will be available only in digital download format.

You may view all of the books currently on sale here. Please note that some orders may take up to two weeks to ship after the order is received.

 

Closeout of Single DVDs
Classes on the Text of A Course in Miracles
Classes on the Manual of A Course in Miracles

Single DVDs of the Classes on the Text and the Classes on the Manual are now available for $3.00 each. This sale is restricted to the stock on hand, which is very, very limited. You can view the DVDs of the Classes on the Text here, beginning with the Introduction through Chapter 31. The DVDs of the Classes on the Manual can be viewed here, beginning with Volume 1 through Volume 10.

 

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Here’s a NEW VIDEO I did with Bruce Rawles, discussing Section 16 of The Manual for Teachers: “How Should the Teacher of God Spend His Day.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JgHjOcxzrwg&feature=youtu.be

Here’s a NEW AUDIO I did with CA Brooks, 12 Radio, on what it means to go “above the battleground” (ACIM Text 23, Section IV) http://www.12radio.com/archive.cfm?archive=13D9C907-26B9-4187-86F1370A394E8755

Here’s a RECENT AUDIO I did with CA Brooks, 12Radio, on ACIM workbook lesson 138: “Heaven is the decision I must make.” Despite the countless decisions that appear to confront us throughout our days there is really only one choice to make right now: Heaven or hell? Do I choose to side with the inner teacher of separate interests and root myself more deeply in this dream of exile from all-inclusive Love or choose the inner teacher that will help me take another step toward awakening to our prevailing innocence? http://www.12radio.com/archive.cfm?archive=AC6D703F-26B9-4187-86E87DD038247D38

MY LATEST BOOK, FORGIVENESS: THE KEY TO HAPPINESS, remains DISCOUNTED on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Forgiveness-Happiness-Susan-A-Dugan/dp/0983742022 , along with my second book in the forgiveness series, FORGIVENESS OFFERS EVERYTHING I WANThttp://www.amazon.com/Forgiveness-Offers-Everything-I-Want/dp/0983742014/ref=pd_bxgy_14_img_2?ie=UTF8&refRID=07RKZW8SHE2RNC209A2D

In this RECENT VIDEO, Bruce Rawles and I discuss A Course in Miracles lesson 190: “I choose the joy of God instead of pain.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WPqUpNmAmG0

Here’s a RECENT AUDIO I did with CA Brooks, 12Radio, on ACIM workbook lesson 101: “God’s will for me is perfect happiness” and 102: “I share God’s will for happiness for me.” http://www.12radio.com/archive.cfm?archive=16BFF184-26B9-4187-86DD07743FBB7355  You’d think we’d like to hear that God’s will for us is perfect happiness, but we can’t possibly believe that and also believe we attacked God and threw his love away.  Following our inner Teacher’s path of true forgiveness begins to dissolve the guilt in our mind, teaching us that it was just silly to believe we could oppose God’s will and create a separate one. Allowing us to gradually accept that we deserve the happiness we share within God’s presence and could never really destroy. Here’s a NEW AUDIO I did with CA Brooks, 12Radio, on

Schedule individual MENTORING sessions here: https://www.foraysinforgiveness.com/personal-coaching  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 video Bruce Rawles and I discuss themes from my most recent book, Forgiveness: The Key to Happiness: https://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.

 

 

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