Tuesday, 12 October 2010

The Real Alternative

Let us take a glimpse at an average day in the life of the ego…

Drag yourself out of bed. Drink two cups of strong coffee. Eat something unhealthy on the go. Shower and spend ages finding what to wear to attract the right partner (this applies even if you already have one). Read the newspaper. Moan about your special hate figure politician, or the weather, with a commuter on the way to work. Put on your work ‘mask’ and go on autopilot. Flirt, gossip and complain about a few of your colleagues with your co-workers. During your lunch break, talk about the drudgery of everyday life and read a copy of Hello or Now (for the girls), Nuts or Upfront (for the boys). Continue the conversation about Cheryl Coles cellulite on the shop floor. Have a couple of drinks with your mates after work, to help anaesthetise the pain and alleviate any guilt resulting from the day’s gossip. Go home watch your favourite soap opera or un-reality TV programme. Disagree with your partner on just about everything. Go to bed ExHaaaaaaaaUsTeD!

This living death makes perfect sense given that the ego’s goal is to kill us and, maybe, this is the closest it comes to doing so whilst we are still in a body.

We appear to lack any real direction in life, preferring to follow this unconscious death urge instead. It is as if we are on a useless treadmill, going nowhere, with just enough food and water to keep us going – and, sadly, we are convinced that is all we are worth.

The ego encourages us to “seek and do not find” (T 223 and 226). It sees every-body as a threat to its sense of specialness and will eradicate anyone who gets in its way. So, we spend our days throwing tantrums, blaming everybody and everything and, then, wondering why we are so weary, depressed and mentally scarred from the war we have waged against ourselves and others since the beginning of time. We are so far removed from the truth that the world becomes our reality and God illusion.

Whenever we attack a brother, either overtly or covertly, we are really attacking ourselves. That is because there is only one mind. So all attack (even if we think it is justified) is really self-attack – a lame attempt to cast off the guilt we are feeling by projecting it outward. It is all part of the egos crazy plan to keep us chained to this body and to the world.

In my opinion, what is happening in the world, is pale in comparison to what goes on inside our heads every second of the day. Our thoughts are the real weapons of mass destruction and we think about 50,000 of them every day. Imagine if we were to channel that same energy into thinking thoughts of Spirit. The results would be phenomenal.

You may believe that you lack the commitment to make the necessary changes in your thinking. Nonsense! Beware of the dreaded ‘excusitis’ – a common ailment amongst the living dead! We are always committed to something; and its either fearful or loving. There is no in-between. We are either thinking loving thoughts or nothing at all. It is really that simple.

A Course in Miracles may appear difficult, at first, when really its teachings are radical and simple. It is only our resistance to Love that causes us discomfort.

“Think not that happiness is ever found by following a road away from it. This makes no sense, and cannot be the way. To you who seem to find this course to be too difficult to learn, let me repeat that to achieve a goal you must proceed in its direction, not away from it.” (T 654)

A few years ago, I was the victim of an assault at work. Things went from bad to worse when fabricated statements started to surface, making me out to be the perpetrator. I quickly sought counsel in the ego, who took pity on me, and advised me to fight to get fair compensation. So, I packed the Holy Spirit off on an extended holiday and decided to party with the ego instead! What started out as a pride-filled showdown, acceptable to me, rapidly turned into a revolting pig’s breakfast! It was like walking uphill, backwards, blindfolded, with both legs tied together and expecting to get to the top of the hill.

It was only when I found the courage to look beneath the surface that I realised the error of my ways. Old memories surfaced (triggered by the incident) of a boy who spent his childhood feeling odd, alone and unlovable. Suddenly, the problem had stopped being outside of me. There was nobody left to blame.

“Forgive yourself your madness, and forget all senseless journeys and all goal-less aims. They have no meaning.” (T 655)

A few days later, I had a heartfelt conversation with my manager at work, speaking from a place of calm. I chose to remember his innocence and my own.

Everything we experience in a body, good or bad, is the effect of a decision that we have made. And there are no exceptions to this rule. When you realise that you, alone, are responsible for your thoughts and that everything you see is of your making, then separate interests fall away and you will remember God.

A Course in Miracles is radical because it goes against the worldly grain. We have been given powerful transformational tools to help us rise above our darkest fears, a lamp to light the way.

Learning to think with Spirit takes a little willingness and daily practice. Fortunately, its judgement is reliable, intimate and deep, and leads to God, unlike our own which is superficial and wide of the mark, and leads us straight back to the lunatic asylum called earth!

“The learning that the world can offer but one choice, no matter what its form may be, is the beginning of acceptance that there is a real alternative instead.” (T 654)

We all have the potential for greatness hidden deep within our unconscious mind, regardless of our upbringing or position in society. Practicing forgiveness, in our everyday experience, can help draw that greatness to the surface.

“You can not escape from what you are.” (T 655)

This land of make believe is whatever you want it to be. Forgive and you will see it differently.

P.S My new blog is called  An Experiment in Conscious Dying. I am looking for like minded individuals, mighty companions, who would be willing to follow this blog while I make the journey.


Elloa said...

LOVE this piece of writing from you Nige, and I love love love that photo.

This post has so much in it - it's full of pure Course teachings that speak to me no matter how many times I read it.

Thank you xxx

Brooke said...

Thank you for your description of the ego. Your words are so rich with meaning for me, like a reflection in the mirror. Makes this work expand when others begin to see it the same way. So lucky to have your writing. Keep doing it!