"Smoking and Caffeine addictions"

From: Raj at Boston, MA - 1992

QUESTION: Wait a minute here...

ANSWER: Iím going to interrupt you for a moment. And Iím going to say this to everyone. In this gathering, as well as anytime that you express a desire for help from your guidance, donít try to be perfect in your expression of your desire. If it comes out like gobbily-goop and it is not orderly and it is not logical and it is not proper English; none of us care. Because Iíll tell you, that weíre not even really listening to the words that come out of your mouth, but the meanings you are feeling and trying to put into words. So, continue and if it is not perfectly put, thatís marvelous, itís all right.

QUESTION: I have two questions, one is pertaining to school. The desire has been removed and I donít know why. If itís fear...

ANSWER: The desire for what?

QUESTION: To study. Itís not there. And I donít know if its fear of failureÖ the desire is just not there. And two: I have...

PAUL: Just a moment, this is me Paul. Are you currently a student? Okay, continue.

QUESTION: Yes. If Iím suppose to be in school, I would like to know if the direction Iím heading in is mediation and if thatís the correct place to head. And two: I have several addictions that are preoccupying my life for quite awhile. And I donít understand why the pattern keepsÖ itís about the only thing that keeps unfolding in my life, is these two particular patterns.

ANSWER: So that others might relate to you, would you share the nature of the two addictions?

QUESTION: Cigarettes and coffee and I feel or have given myself the belief that they affect my skin.

ANSWER: Well, letís handle that first. Letís become free of the belief that they affect your skin. Letís get a clearer sense of their inability to have physical effects upon your body. Letís deal with that before you attempt to set aside the cigarettes and coffee. Letís become less charged about those two habits.

You see the more charged you are about it, the more conflicted you are within yourself. And the more conflicted you are, the more compulsive will be your "addition." When the need is, to come to a place of peace in which there is no element to fuel compulsiveness, or the reaching for anything that will seem to supply you with a peace that you donít seem to have.

Oh, I hear someone saying, "how can you say that? It is well known that cigarettes cause cancer and that cigarettes do such-and-such. And Raj, havenít I even read some place where you told Paul that smoking will keep him from experiencing the finer levels of conscious awareness?"

I will tell you that this question arises out of a conflicted sense of what this world is and what this body is; the space time continuum I referred to as the third-dimensional frame of reference.

You know what? Cause does not lie in the three-dimensional frame of reference, it lies in what I have referred to as the fourth-dimension, which is another valid way of referring to the Kingdom of Heaven. The fourth-dimension, or the fourth-dimensional conscious experience of being is the experience of consciousness without any distortion present whatsoever, which means that you are having the conscious experience of everything through Godís eyes, if I may put it that way.

It is the Movement of God which is always fourth-dimensional that is rendered visible and tangible three-dimensionally. But the cause does not reside in the three-dimensional frame of reference, which means that cigarettes do not cause cancer, overeating does not cause over weight, one part of your world cannot kill another part of your world, etc.

Now, I know that flies right in the face of your common sense. But the belief that cause does lie in the three-dimensional frame of reference is part of the mutual agreement to be ignorant, or to have a point of view based upon partial information that two or more of you agree to call truth. If indeed cigarettes or carcinogens or anything else caused cancer, then no matter how much realization you had, it couldnít be changed, there would never be healing.

If genes are responsible for a deformation in your body, you could never experience a correction of that deformation. And there would be no reason for such a word as "healing." It is because the Cause of your body does not reside in the three-dimensional frame of reference, but is the Intent of God expressed at every given moment that you can experience healing, including regeneration of congenital defects, which are the things you least expect to experience healing of. It is because there is a God that operates beyond the three-dimensional frame of reference that YOU can arrive at a point of discovering that you are not a three-dimensional entity either; and wake up to what I will call the fourth-dimensional Reality of You RIGHT HERE and find yourself in the Kingdom of Heaven, as the Christ.

I wouldnít even be wasting my time sharing any of what I had shared with you this weekend so far if indeed cause lay in the three-dimensional frame of reference. Everything that I have been saying has been based on the fourth-dimensional Reality of Being. Another way you could say that is, the Divine Reality of Being, and the fact that that conscious experience of Being is your birthright. I wouldnít be saying anything at all if there werenít really a way out of the incarceration of your current ignorance. And the only way there could be a way out is if there is something beyond it. And the reason you can get out of it is because what is beyond your current sense of limitation is your Home, is the territory of your freedom of Being and this limitation you are experiencing is not. Weíre talking about, you could say, blowing the limits sky high.

It is as though you are standing in a privy and even the little silhouetted moon hole is to high for you to see out, so that it is hard for you to imagine that there is anything beyond the confines of this "SHIT-HOUSE of an experience." And you might imagine that there are little leather straps, like handles, on the four walls and you are in there with your arms through it, holding your shit-house together for fear of loosing what little sense of security you have. And in effect, I am encouraging you to let go of the walls because they will fall down and you will be able to see infinitely in all directions and have the opportunity to experience and explore and be without confinement. And you could say, the inside of the privy is the three-dimensional frame of reference. And indeed, that space inside the privy is a valid part of the infinity thatís available to you, itís just the walls that are invalid. So, everything is happening fourth-dimensionally.

Now, I have shared this in another workshop but I cannot make you wait until the tapes are available so that you may hear it. For those of you who are familiar with the Course, you have heard of level confusion. And right now we are talking with respect to level confusion, fourth-dimension, third-dimension, second, etc. And I am going to share with you an explanation that will give you a hint of the meaning of level confusion.

Imagine if you will that it is early morning, you have been asleep all night and your mother, husband, wife, daughter, somebody comes into the bedroom, puts their hand on your shoulder and shakes you and says, your name, "itís time to get up." And youíre in the middle of a dream. And in the dream, someone standing next to you, puts their hand on your shoulder and says, "itís time to wake up." That is level confusion. The event is occurring outside of the scope of your dream, but it becomes interpreted as something happening within the dream. Now the one who comes into the bedroom and shakes your shoulder is functioning, we will say, fourth-dimensionally; and you in your dream are having a three-dimensional experience. And that fourth-dimensional action is interpreted as something originating in the dream.

Well Iíll tell you something, conception does not occur because of any innate power of a sperm or receptivity of an egg. It happens because the Movement of God is occurring. And the identification of that Movement must be manifest, it must appear as something. So, even your physical existence doesnít stem from a three-dimensional source. And it is because it is a fourth-dimensional Movement and the manifestation of it called you, is the manifestation of a fourth-dimensional presence or actuality that you, who have come to a conclusion that you are a character in a dream with limitations; can have the opportunity to be nudged awake and experience release from the limitations, which are not true about you. Which is what weíre talking about.

And because your body is indeed the visibility and tangibility of a fourth-dimensional Movement of God and therefore does not have itís origins, physically speaking or three-dimensionally speaking, only because of that can you experience spontaneous remission of a disease or the correction of a vision problem, which you say is hereditary because your mother and your grandmother and your great grand father and Joe and Henry and Sibyl way back, all had the same problem. The reason you can at any point experience release from a physical limitation is because your body at every moment is originating in the thought of God fourth-dimensionally.

Iím going to ask you a question, and this is specifically for students of the Course who because of the wording of the Course and the current interpretation of it have come to a point of conviction that the body is an illusion. Why would I have ever healed an illusion? Why would I restore sight to the blind, or a withered arm? Wouldnít the healing of illusion mean the arm and the eye-balls disappeared? The healing would have to be the uncovering of the absence of that which isnít real. Letís be reasonable here. But the withered arm was restored to the fullness the same as the other, and the eyes that were blind could see. Why? Because the natural condition of both had their actuality of Source fourth-dimensionally; and not as a result of a birth defect, a three-dimensional cause. And why? Because that Individuality was the Christ also and itís his birthright to experience his perfection in all respects, just as it is with you.

Waking up is the result of the penetration of Reality, fourth-dimensional Reality, the Kingdom of Heaven through the characteristics of unconsciousness or limited awareness, which we have referred to as dreaming. Thus, causing the walls of your confinement to fall and disclose to you that which has always infinitely been present and that which has always infinitely been the territory of your Being for you to enjoy.

You need to have a new vantage point, a new context. Everybody, you might say, wants to get out of the confinement. What will work here is, as I said, letting go of the walls. In letting go of them so that they fall, it lets in the infinity. There is less sense of effort and of necessary accomplishment attached to that than somehow fighting your way out of confinement.

The illustration of the privy is an excellent one, the one with the straps, whereby you hold yourself in a secure and "comfortable" place because Reality has not provided walls. And Reality is not keeping you out of Itself.

And again, as I said, youíre going to get tired of this word. The element of curiosity is what justifies letting go of what you call security, the four walls of the confinement that causes you to be miserable, but at the same time gives you what you would call a reasonable experience of security.

Does that answer your question?

QUESTION: Yes, except for school.

ANSWER: Youíre right where you need to be. And in effect, you are like a piano student, a student who loves the piano, who runs into a dry spell where it seems not enjoyable and not worth pursuing. But, I encourage you to persist here because the aliveness to it will return. It will not be a drudge for you and it would be a sad mistake to abandon your schooling. And I am going to encourage you by telling you that you are in exactly the right field. And you will do very well and you will be very much needed.

_______________________

From: Carmel 1990

QUESTION: Well as I get it the Course says that the only cause is the mind. So that an allergy reaction has nothing to do with the food or the drug, but has only to do with the mind.

Now, my confusion is that, in the first chapter or so of Paulís book Raj tells him that it would be best if he quit smoking and drinking caffeine. And so, my ego liked that contradiction or what seemed to be at any rate. And Iím struggling with this a lot, getting a lot out of the struggle. But Iíd rather not suffer anymore with the confusion of this. So clarification on cause and effect is what Iím after.

ANSWER: If before you had sat down in your chair someone had placed a thumbtack on it and you had come back from break and sat down on it, it would be rather difficult to convince you that it was all going on in your mind, and that it was simply a shift of perception in your mind rather than your standing up and pulling the thumbtack out that would correct the problem.

Now, when you arrive at a point where you are experiencing the body of light, that is the true experience of this body that you are presently experiencing that would be in pain if you sat on a tack, until you are experiencing that body of light which would also disclose to you the body of light of the tack that you are sitting on, it will hurt to sit on a tack. When you are experiencing all form as light forms, if you will, manifesting the true intent of that which formed it, meaning the Father, you will indeed be able to sit on the tack and only experience exquisite beauty of the intent of your body and the intent of the tack--which have nothing to do with harm.

Likewise, until you are mentally clear--able to be absolutely unconflicted and unfearful in your mind--when a match is held under your finger tip do not hold your finger over a match. Until you are able to take a drug without suffering ill effects from it because you are absolutely unconflicted in your mind, do not take the drug.

But I will tell you that when the time comes that you have been able to discover perfect equilibrium mentally, which is what you do when you go into meditation, you will indeed find yourself able to sit on a tack, or smoke a cigarette, or put your hand over a flame with no sensation of suffering whatsoever. And so itís always an issue of the mind. But until that issue is corrected at the point of mind it is well to steer clear of those circumstances, physically speaking.

Physical distress is always the manifestation of mental conflict--of confusion. And if you do not know who you are truly, if you are not experiencing your Christhood and if you are not experiencing the universe and your world as One, inseparable from you, then you must use common sense while you undo the false mental conditionings that will ultimately allow you to be in any circumstance without physical damage or suffering.

So you, if I may put it this way, break the rules slowly. And you only break the rules that you can break without generating fear. Your guide helps you to step out into new territory in such a way that your level of fear is reduced and you do not panic. And you then have the opportunity to find that the step you have taken has been on to solid firm ground rather than the void that you thought it was. So you use your common sense as you gently and wisely move beyond the limits of your common sense. And in this way you establish an extended or enlarged common sense. And what is reasonable and what works becomes less and less confining. Thatís the end of the answer.

______________________________

"Karma"

From: Raj at Melborne, Australia - 1993

QUESTION: Could you say something on the Eastern concept of Karma, please?

ANSWER: I would be delighted! First of allóand although it is said to illicit a laugh, it is the best way of expressing itókarma is a pay as you go affair. Karma is not accumulated. Karma is simply the manifestation of the fact that as long as you are ignorant, you will have the effects of the ignorance. Not because you have done something in the past that you must now pay for, but because you are doing something in the present in an ignorant fashion that doesnít achieve the results that are expected. And so, you suffer from the ignorance as long as the ignorance is present.

Now, there is another aspect of karma that is, unfortunately, what Iím going to call a malicious concept. Because if you buy into it, you have no real way of escaping from itóif you buy into the conceptóand that is: if you have hurt someone else, you will have to suffer as a penalty for the suffering they endured.

You want to know what is malicious about it? What is malicious about it is that it suggests, underhandedly, not out in the open, that you can be hurt by someone else. In other words, that there is not enough integrity to your Being that you could, let us say, stand like a willow tree in the wind, and although it blows you about it doesnít harm you because you are not inflexible.

It means that all you can ever be is the recipient of what other people dish out, as though there were no substance to you in your own right. And if someone else is kind to you and loving toward you, that you can feel loved and you can feel good and you can experience the benefits of the kindness. And vice versa, if they are unkind to you, you can feel hurt and you can feel the effect of their hatred, etc.

And again, either positively or negatively, there is nothing of enough substance to you in your own right that whether someone is being kind to you or hurtful to you has nothing to do with your joy and your peace. It means that you are rather like Pinnochio, a puppet made out of wood, without a life of its own that is enlivened only with the good or the bad that someone else does by pulling your strings. It promotes an ongoing experience of powerlessness. That is what is malicious about it.

And it is time for all of you to get off of this merry-go-round, this belief that someone else can make you happy or someone else can make you miserable. It is the very belief that you donít have enough integrity to your own Being, that you are dependent upon someone elseís love or hate or appreciation or criticism to give you any substance. And indeed, because of that belief, it has become part of the means that the ego uses to exercise control.

The way you become free of that is in the recognition that your joy is independent of the good that anyone else does. And your joy is independent of any hurtful, hateful, malicious, unkind thing another person does to you. Thatís where your freedom is to be experienced. And when I said thatís where your power is, I donít mean power over these terrible people or these wonderful people. I mean the power of your integrity that is so clear to you that you are unassailable, that you donít have to do anything to or for the person who is being kind, or to or against the person who is being unkind.

The sooner all of you stop passing the buck and making someone else accountable, the less all of you will need insurance and the sooner you will begin to conduct yourself in a way that is self-responsible, reflecting your own integrity. And you will not feed into other peopleís beliefs that you are responsible for their misery. And you will not feed into the belief that you are indebted to someone because you created misery for them. You each, by virtue of your choice of thoughts and principles and values and so-on, create for yourself your own misery or your own joy.

For some of you, Paul came in and sat down and indeed we have had this weekend together, and just what has been said has registered with you and it has made you happyóit has made you feel joy. And others of you have come in and you have seen Paul out in the foyer smoking a cigarette. "Oh my, doesnít fit my picture." But itís your pictureóitís your picture. And those of you who have felt the joy have found things said that support what you believe and havenít violated your pictureóand so you say you are happy.

I want for all of you to be feeling your joy, whether things conform to pictures or concepts or not, because that is where you stand in your integrity and you are really able to pay attention to what means something and disregard that which means nothing.

Now, I want to ask each of you something. None of you are totally Awakened at this moment. And yet available to each one of youóregardless of the degree of your ignoranceóis a spiritual guide, a totally Awakened Individuality reflecting nothing less than the Fatherís Will, whose intent it is to uncover to you, as rapidly as you are willing to absorb it, your divinity. Obviously, the experience of divine Guidance is going to be available to you in your state of, letís say, having clay feet, having feet of clay.

It is going to be available to you in whatever level of ignorance you are experiencing at the momentówhether you smoke, whether you wear glasses, whether you are always polite, whether you have a temper, whether you are ever thoughtful or not, whether you bathe often enough, whether you are living out of your car or in an elegant home.

Are you going to say, "No thank you, I canít talk with you yet because it doesnít fit everybodyís picture of what a person should be like to experience guidance." No, you wonít do that. You want to know why? Because no matter how rotten you are, no matter how rotten you seem to be, there is always something in you that says you deserve something betteróthat there is justification for you to get out of your misery. And that is the Truth.

And so, the Father comes to you like the Prodigal Son, while you are yet still a long way off. He doesnít wait at the end of the drive at the gate to welcome you after you have come all the way Home. But He goes out to meet you while you are yet a long way offówhile you are yet in whatever level of ignorance youíre in.

You know what the wonderful lesson in this thing with me and Paul is? The fact that there does not have to be anything special about you in order for you to have available to you, in the most practical form, the Fatherís Love that lifts you up and brings you Home, back into your Right Mind.

I have encouraged Paul to be willing to give up smoking. But I will tell you something: it would be a sad thing if Paul came to a workshop, no longer a smoker, and people said, "Ah, yes, this is a holy man. He doesnít smoke, heís clean, heís polite, he manifests love, yes." Why? Theyíre still hung up in their picture. Do you see what I mean?

And their picture is what they use to define whether they are comfortable or uncomfortable with a thing. And if someone is uncomfortable with the fact that Paul smokes because it doesnít fit the picture, should Paul feel guilty? Is he now obligated in another lifetime to spend at least a few minutes penance for the little bit of distress that you felt because he didnít fit your picture, or should he even maybe feel self-conscious and go down stairs and smoke in the bathroom so that you arenít offended? And so, that you might be willing at least to hear what Raj has to say, even though you are offended by Paul.

Itís all control. Itís all an endless string of spaghetti, tangled and messy. And itís all irrelevant. You each create your own joy or your own misery by virtue of what you believe to be true.

And now, weíre going to take this another step, because that joy and that miseryówhich I have just talked at some length aboutóis all at the ego level and doesnít constitute the capital "J" Joy of your Being, which you can access when you dare to start within, and be in the world from that place. Because that Joy is not a vacillating emotion but an ever present part of the substance of your Being, just as peace is. And it is not dependent upon what happens. In fact what happens is dependent upon it.

So, karma, like twin flames, is bull shit. And if you play with it you will stink, until you decide that you would rather smell sweet than try to find out what on earth the value is of this sticky brown stuff.

_____________________________

From: Raj at Hood River - 1995

QUESTION: Thank you, Raj. I seem to have some difficulties both on a physical level and on a mental or emotion level that feel like real limitations. And they seem to be getting maybe more intense or more sever. Iíve been going through what I would term a period of recovery from the ending of like a 15 year long relationship. And I would kind of think that, you know, at the getting on to 3 years that would be improving but it seems to be getting worse. And physically I seem to be having more and more difficulty with like cigarette smoke, additives in food. If I go into a room where thereís been a lot of smoking like some of the areas here, you know my throat will close off, my eyes just burn and itch constantly. And the longer I stay in it the worse it seems to get.

So on several levels it seems like an isolation or more isolation. And I think Iíve done a lot of work and attempted to get healed in both those areas. But when you said yesterday about people leaving here and going to a place where they just might be pain free for a year, you know that sounds really good to me to be not in this struggle anymore. And not having these... it almost feels like the physical things are an invasion or an attack on me. The cigarette smoke is real debilitating to me, fumes or pollution are real debilitating to me. And I do kind of live in an isolated rural area so from that I can kind of retreat into that and get some respite from it. But all the things, you know, feel like theyíre so heavy and so demoralizing that Iíd rather be in a place of peace out of here than I would, you know, continue to go through this.

ANSWER: Iím glad you asked this. If ultimately you are going to find, as I described a little bit ago, that everything you see is just like you and that you will feel loved by it, obviously the very things that you have described which are irritating to your system or to your thoughts, those very things will be the things that will confirm to you your Sanity and your Divinity, but you will be seeing them differently.

One of the things that I did not describe to you was the fact that everything that you will see will obviously be to you constituted of Living Light. That does not mean it will not have definition. That does not mean it will not be recognizable, whether itís a body or a tree or a universe. But it will be obvious to you that the substance of it is Light. Not only that, you will find yourself spontaneously aware that the Light is Living Love.

Now why am I telling you this? I am telling you this because at this very moment everything you see, the wallpaper, the wood, the chairs, the other people are vibrant Living Light/Love. And that means that any cigarette smoke that you might see in this room, or any of the other irritating things that you experience would be seen as that which was utterly loving you because its substance was not nicotine and tars, but Love.

Now you know another way to begin to break down this boundary, this small portion of the infinity of you that youíve claimed as your territory? It is to invite a new experience. Thatís like wanting a friendóthatís inviting a new experience. Iím telling you that right here, right now there is a new experience awaiting you. Ultimately it is the experience of the Kingdom of Heaven, because thatís what youíre right in the middle of. But your little territory that you have defined as your territory causes you not to see the whole territory as it is, but only in terms of the definitions of the territory you have claimed as yours.

Now if you want to escape all of these irritating things, all that you will do will be to move from this part of the Kingdom of Heaven to another part of the Kingdom of Heaven, from this place where the Light of Living Love that is the substance of all form that identifies the Presence of and Movement of God to another place where there is the same thing to experience. But you wonít experience it there unless you invite a bigger experience of it than whatever definition you are giving to it. The real need here is to realize that defense is not needed right here. Your bodies reaction is reflecting the feeling of a need for defense, a need for something, some conditions or circumstances to provide you with a feeling of safety.

Now I said yesterday that because justice is the substitute that is used for healing, and that healing is what is called for, something radical is called for. And I am talking right now in terms of being radical. The answer doesnít lie in going to a place where conditions are improved, because those conditions will just be other conditions that you have defined as being safer for you. But youíre still going to be there in a state circumscribed by definitions and your tent will still be the same size and you will be no more able to discover the Kingdom of Heaven, the Reality of Living Love identifying the Movement of God. Itís right here! And this is the radical approach, if you will, that needs to be taken. Instead of fearing what these elements and circumstances can do to you, dare to have the curiosity to feel the Love that has to be the substance of anything you are experiencing.

And thatís why I said yesterday, at random say, "thank you, thank you, thank you," to whatever catches your eye. And you are saying thank you to being, because that is the way without control you let in a new experience. You see you are not going to have a new experience until you let yourself see it a new way. You donít have to wait for the circumstances to change. "Yeah, but I canít control my body reacting to this and reacting to that, it just happens." No, thatís just another definition or concept that you have applied to it. Your body, as I said yesterday, is the visibility and tangibility of the presence of your Individuality. And the presence of your Individuality is the Presence of God expressed and seen where you are. And your body has only one function: to identify your Presence perfectly. It has no capacity to act independent of you, of your presence, of your divine Presence. You can however, in a separated self-awareness experience fear and then use your body as a defense, tensing it up, densifying it, doing what is unnatural to it, and you call it physical problemódis-ease.

So do you need a friend? Well, you sure need your body to be a friend instead of an enemy. And so I encourage you to invite your body to register with you in its true intent. Iím not asking you to ask your body to be different, or to do something different. If you ask that, youíre asking your body to do what itís been doing all along. And while youíre asking it to perform its divine Function of registering with you what it truly is you will be neglecting to energize fear about what itís going to do next. And in the absence of that fear you will not be using it defensively and you will find the density dedensifying and you will find healing occurring.

But you all have got to start right where you are with a willingness and a curiosity to see what in heavenís name is really going on here and looking like wallpaper, and wood, and bodies, and egoís. "What is really going on here?" Thatís the way the boundary breaks down. It breaks down through sheer neglect of being taken care of, reinforced. It is not able to keep itself together. It has to be daily maintained.

Specifically the answer for you relative to all of these things you mentioned in your question is to be willing to have a curiosity to see whatís really thereówhatís Really Divinely there. Are you afraid to findóand Iím not asking you to answer this questionóbut are you afraid to find that the need for a divorce and the struggle through the divorce might somehow be able to be identified as whollizing and divine? Are you afraid to find cigarette smoke to be harmless? Are you afraid to find that those things that had justified great self-righteous indignation to be something functioning divinely on your behalf beyond your current sense of what was best for you? Ultimately youíll see that the only thing that was ever going on was the Kingdom of Heaven. Ultimately everything going on identified your fulfillmentónot the way you were interpreting it.

It comes back to this issue of justice or healing. You know the last person to wake up, the last person to suddenly see the Kingdom of Heaven right where he isóPaul just thought, "will probably be me," because he already knew what I was going to sayówill be one who says in his last ditch attempt that, "I have a right at least once in awhile, to be able to see things the way I want to see them." And so, everyone else will be in bliss and right in the middle will be this one individual who will inevitably still be protecting himself against elements, cigarette smoke, smells. He will still be trying to be at peace in the atmosphere of the stink of his shit in the outhouse, you see. "My way to wake up is to be at one with my shit! I know it to be true and therefore Iím sticking to my guns."

You see as long as you donít find tobacco smoke and other elements to be guilty of imposing upon your freedom, you will not be in a position of having the curiosity necessary to see the divine event going on right there that will exonerate them and free you. And so the radical stance that is required here in order to have healing is to allow the elements you find objectionable to be redefined by the Holy Spirit, if you will, so that you can forgive them by withdrawing your judgment upon them and thus blessing yourself with healing. Thatís the radical stance that will get you off of this scale of justice.

It is appropriate to take a break.

"The Healing Team"

QUESTION: I want to say thank you, thank you, thank you, Raj.

ANSWER: Are there that many of me?

QUESTION: Well you said to say, "thank you, thank you, thank you" for talking to us. And on many of the tapes Iíve heard you mention the "healing team" and I really want to know more about it. What it is? How we call on them? Do we need them?

ANSWER: Well, do you want them?

QUESTION: Well, what I mean is can we do this by our self, if we just acknowledge our divinity, or do we need help?

ANSWER: That is a good question. Tell me how would you know how to acknowledge your divinity without some help?

QUESTION: Are you asking me?

ANSWER: No, it is a rhetorical question. You see you donít really know something until you experience that something. It is of course a start in the right direction to know intellectually that you are divine, because that gives you a reason to ask what it means.

So you canít do anything alone. You canít do anything by yourself. Its always been the attempt to do something by yourself that has caused the sense of separation from your Source and has caused your direct experience of Who you Really Are to be unavailable to you. So the only way you can move in the right direction is to stop doing stuff by yourself.

The fall was a declaration of independence. So if youíre going to come back into your full stature as the divine one that you are youíre going to have to revoke that declaration of independence.

So if you wish you can acknowledge that you are divine, but then ask to have the Meaning of that to be disclosed to you. You can say, "I am divine. And I desire to have the full experience of what that Means. I ask for help in releasing whatever blocks me from the direct and full experience from what that Means." Or to be even more straight about it you can say, "I know I am divine, but I also know that I donít have the faintest idea of what that means. And I want to know what it Means. Please fill me with the experience of what that Means. Please help me release whatever I am doing that blocks that experience."

So what is the "healing team"? Well, you would be amazed to know how much help you have available to you. You would be amazed to know how many there are who are Awake who stand at the ready, you might say, to help you remember who you Are. And part of you are remembering who you Are is the rediscovery of what your body really is, as that which is the recognizable part of the expression of God. Like I told Paul, your guide you could say is there to help wash the windows of your mind. And what has come to be called the "healing team" are those who are Awake, who work in conjunction with your guide on your behalf in terms of clearing your perception of your body.

Now the fact is that the misperceptions that you call disease are just that, misperceptions. And so the healing team doesnít actually manipulate your body, but helps bring to the surface those beliefs that are contributing to the acts of self-defense that you employ that create density where all there really is is Light.

So you need someone or something to illuminate you. As I said earlier, you need a friend. And you need to discover the emptiness of being alone so that it holds no attraction for you, so that you can honestly recognize that you do need a friend. You see, in a way spiritual growth can easily be ego satisfying, because the better you get at your metaphysics, or the better you get at knowing the truth the better supposedly you get at being able to do that which sets yourself free. But you know what it says, "itís the truth that shall set you free," not your knowing of the truth that shall set you free. And if you want to know the truth you have to listen. You canít be the declarer of truth. Truth declares itself.

You see, one of the statements that Mary Baker Eddy made was that "Truth is revealed, it needs only to be practiced." And the followers have interpreted that to mean that the Truth has been revealed, its Christian Science. And it only needs to be practiced. No, Truth is revealed, which means that for every single individual Truth is a revelation.

And what does Truth do? It reveals Itself. Well, when Truth reveals Itself you say, "Oh, yes!" And rather than it being something you have to practice youíve already changed. You are not ignorant anymore in that specific regard. And the inclination to be on this new basis is natural and spontaneous. So you donít want to become practicers of Truth, you want to be listening at every moment as Truth reveals Itself anew, because Truth is a synonym for God.

So you know you canít just listen alone. Itís not an isolated activity, because itís an invitation for something "other than yourself" to you. So it immediately is an active embrace. So, yes you do need the "healing team," or you do need God, or you do need the Christ, or you do need one who is Awake, because that joining must occur that undoes the act of separation that caused you to be in a frame of mind where fear was available to you to experience that justified your self protection that you are experiencing physically as a disease. Thereís no way out of it.

And the fact is that Iím sure every single one of you to one degree or another has pursued something on your own right up till the bitter end and finally you have succumbed and said "Help, I canít do this all by myself." And when youíve said "help" help has come. The reason it has come is because the declaration of independence was revoked and a joining was invited, allowed and it occurred.

Now it doesnít matter whether you think of it as "the healing team" or the angels or the Holy Spirit or me, it only matters that the invitation is extended. That is a prerequisite. That is the only way healing occurs. Anything else ends up being manipulation or rearrangement of the physical, while the reason the physical needed to be rearranged continues unchecked because youíre still in a state of independenceóso called independence.

Somebody asked me if I would say what you all look like to me. And you know I canít answer that in that limited way. Because you know what? Wherever you are you are accompanied by a company of helpers. And this room is full. Yes, if you could see this room is illuminated, not only by the Light that you are but by the Light of those who have accompanied you, who stand in support of you. But more than that everything you see in this room, every structure you see in this room is illuminated.

Now, what you will come to discover is thatóand this is a difficult thing to put into wordsóall Light is white and yet there is color. The color embodies and expresses the intent ofófor lack of better wordsóthe idea that is formed. In other words, the function of the form is indicated by color of the Light. And what I mean to try to convey is that at the very same time that you see a color you see it as colorlessóas white, in other words. And so when you look at these glasses the frames are a different color from the glass. And the screws holding the ear piece to the frame of the glass is a different color. It is a rose color. It is a particular shade of rose that says the intent or function of this screw is different from the intent or function of the cross brace here, which is a very, very, very light, almost white-yellow. And so there is what some have described as a blaze of color. But itís not chaotic. But colors that I cannot even describe to you because you cannot image what I would describe as a color.

So this room is illuminated. And the illumination, its intent, its function is conveyed by means of its color, and its color relative to the whole. You would say it is quite amazing. And no, Paul is not seeing what I am describing, but it is available to him.

So, you know, really you asked, "Do I need the Ďhealing teamí." Well, whether you need them or not, youíve got them. And theyíre here. And all of them are here for each of you. Gee, that means you donít have any privacy doesnít it? Maybe thatís why youíre not Awake, you still want some privacy. You know what that really means? It means you want something thatís totally yours... Something thatís totally yours... That you would withhold rather than share freely.

Iím going to ask all of you to consider asking within to have revealed to you why might it be a wonderful thing not to have any privacy. That will set things working in a new direction. You see you need to become curious about the things, not hoity-toity, high-flatulent spiritual things but you need to start asking strange questions about everyday things. You need to be curious about a new way of experiencing what youíre seeing everyday.

Well if you donít have privacy then you might feel quite vulnerable. But you know what? The fact is that if you didnít have any privacy you would feel absolutely invulnerable. The only thing you can feel vulnerable about is losing something that is your exclusive possession. And so the Course says, "to have, give all to all." The only thing you can feel vulnerable about is losing something that is exclusively yours.

To give up privacy automatically releases you to your experience of absolute invulnerability. "Well, yeah, but Iíve been studying all these years and Iíve gotten these things clear in my mind, and things are just now beginning to go well for me, and itís proving that everything I was doing was on the right track. And I really know Iím making headway, and now you tell me that managing to do it all by myself isnít where itís at?" No, I wonít tell you that. You can do it for another couple of lifetimes if you want. Yes, I will tell you that.

You canít get into the Kingdom of Heaven by lifting yourself up by your own boot straps. Youíve got to let yourself down and youíve got to let inófiguratively speakingóyouíve got to let the ground support you. And in that willingness to join and be a part of and be in partnership with something else, the act or the declaration of independence is broken. And no I donít get tired of saying it over and over again, because the expression of truth is like a breeze of light. And it is a sheer pleasure to have your being be visible as that which is the source of great joy. Every intention that arises out of oneís unblocked connection with Reality is a source of joy, a recognizable source of joy universally, because there is no such thing as a private experience.

Everyone who is consciously Awake at this moment in addition to everything else they are experiencing are experiencing everything that is going on here this afternoon. I mean everything, everything about each one of you right down to the tips of your toes, because no matter how much you think that body sitting there is yours, itís not!

In a way you tend to, some of you tend to feel pretty good when you come to the lesson in the Course where it says, "today I will make no decisions by myself," like today youíre going to do something new. Yesterday you made no decisions by yourself. Whatís the difference though? The difference is that today you will make no decisions alone and you will have chosen who youíre going to make your decisions with.

You really only have two choices. You have the choice to join with one who is Awake or you have the choice to join with your definition of who you are and the memory banks that it has established. And youíre either going to be being based on your past, or you are going to be being based on Godís present. And those are the only two choices you have. And another way you could say it is, in one way or the other you're channeling something. And you want to know something? Itís never you! Iím going to let you think about that.

You say, "Oh well, I was just being me." Like hell you were. As long as youíre inside this little tiny box that has partitioned off the inside from the rest of the infinity of who you Are you have a way of thinking of yourself and looking at yourself and looking at how things work and you think you have a selfóyou think you have a self. And then you say, "Iím being myself." But when that boundary disintegrates youíll no longer talk about having a self. Youíll no longer think in those terms.

Right now, Paul is here and he is not having an experience of self. I mean by that that where in his "ordinary frame of mind" he would think of a self who was here on this platform separate from youóand now he is becoming self-consciousówhere in his "normal frame of reference" he would think of himself as a self here on the platform different from you when heís self-conscious. And when heís self-conscious itís difficult for him... Well, itís difficult for him to be appropriate, but more than that itís difficult for him to experience the flow of the appropriateness that is all involving. When he is self-conscious he is conscious of a self that is located in space, that only involves the space that his body occupies.

Is this manifestation of self-consciousness not frustrating to you? Would you not rather have the uninhibited flow of the Movement that youíve been experiencing all weekend? Well, Iím going to zap ya! Everybody else would like the same thing from you, not just you, but you and you and you and everyone. The Gift of Who you Are is what blesses everyone.

You see, Paul cannot remember what we were talking about. But he doesnít have to remember what we were talking about because I know what we were talking about, and when his sense of himself gets out of the way he will know what we are talking about.

(Long pause) And now heís dabbling in embarrassment, even though it has no value whatsoever. And why do all of this in front of you? Because youíre going to have the same experiences of losing it and feeling foolish. And you need to understand that as long as youíre intent to listen, to have that friend, as long as that intent is greater than the degree to which you want to play the role of embarrassed one, then being embarrassed or feeling foolish for having lost your center will not govern and guide what will happen.

Okay what were we talking about when Paul lost it through self-consciousness? I am asking for a response, I am not going to put Paul through the paces of getting past the block.

(There was no microphone used so I canít hear the responses.) Indeed. Indeed. Now heís not hiding. Weíll see if we can do it again.

When Paul is letting the words flow, when he is joined with me and is not self-conscious, heís in a Movement. And it is in a Movement that he is in and all of you are in. It is a Movement that is a Wholeness. It is a Movement of clarity. It is a Movement of expression that is healing, not because healing is being attempted, but because the expression of truth is healing and transformational. What I am meaning to convey is that you donít have a self. You are either the direct expression of the intelligence that God is being at this moment, and therefore God is what is being at this moment, or you seem to be a simple expression of stored memories and habit patterns. When things were flowing smoothly Paul was not having an experience of self, but he was having a full experience of being and of being consciousness that in no way held itself separate from any of you, and who experienced no separateness.

Now the simple fact is that through out this awkward period you havenít changed from attentive and warm and interested people to individuals ready to point the finger to Paul and say, "see you goofed." Paulís experience of self-consciousness, or of a self needing to be defensive went on entirely in Paulís mind. Now this is an important thing to understand for two reasons. One is that very often as one engages in his or her spiritual path you think that it is a process of self-improvement. And as long as you think you have a self of the kind weíre talking about, that can be improved or who can be uncomfortable you are experiencing an illusion.

(Another long pause.) I just told Paul, "no they donít have to pay more for this kind of a show." (laughter)

Weíre going to back up. I said that you are always channeling something. Another way of putting it is that you are always giving expression to something. And what youíre giving expression to is never you. You see weíre moving into new territory for Paul too, and he is letting it in very slowly. Paulís going to grow right in front of you. You see the only place, the only circumstance under which you could think that you have a self is from within this boundary of the infinitude of you that you have drawn and claimed as your territory. The territory that is yours belongs to a you that is no longer the infinite but that which is defined by the territory, by the boundaries of the territory claimed. And this you who has claimed the territory can now under these circumstances be called a self, but itís not You, the Whole Infinite One that you Are.

Now as long as you are not totally Awake and you are experiencing everything from within the boundaries of the definition of yourself that has been given to you by virtue of the boundary having been drawn and claimed as yours you have only two experiences of, what Iím going to call communication available to you. One of them is constituted of stored memories and data within the boundary. And the other is the Whole Self that you Are that extends infinitely beyond the boundaries, which is a Wholeness in which all of the Brotherhood exists Wholly and unseparatedly. And so you are either from your tiny vantage point going to be letting in a Brother or a Sister providing clarity to you because you have said you want a friend and you donít want to be alone. You are either letting that in or you are letting in old tapes, so to speak, old recordings, old experiencing and extrapolating from them what the meaning of a thing is or what you ought to be doing.

You see, I will tell you the reason I am bringing this up is becauseóas with Paul, but not at this momentóit is with you, you will think that there is a you that has the choice to listen to your ego or the Holy Spirit. And there is no in-between place. There is not this third vantage point called the self that can choose to listen to the ego or choose to listen to Truth or the Holy Spirit.

As long as you think there is this third place from which to observe you can say, "well, today Iím not going to listen to my ego and Iím not going to listen to my guidance either. Iím just going to hang out for awhile, and Iím just going to be me." And there ainít such a critter! If you understand that your choice really is between something and nothing, between your union with that which is Real and a non-union with a purely imaginary sense of self then you will have the perspective necessary to not value nothing, and to not value being alone. Meaning that you value more having the experience of a friend, that you value the experience of union that connects you with the Movement of Being that is far more fulfilling for you to experience and far more fulfilling for everyone else to experience right where you are than it is when youíre just being you.

Somebody asked also earlier today, "do we have a purpose? What about finding our purpose in life?" Well, again itís like saying "whatís my purpose within the box, within this boundary that gives my life definition." Well your purpose has nothing to do with that box. Your purpose has nothing to do with this lifetime. If you have the realization that you donít have a self that can have a purpose, you will find the experience of purpose happening right where you are that embraces all of the universe and helps to disclose to those who think they have a self that has a purpose that they donít and that the giving up of that concept will allow them to have the wonderful experience that they see you having.

Now I have said it completely, although it did not come out smoothly. And weíre going to take a break, and I do not mind if you chat. But if there are niggling questions or if there is a feeling that you havenít quite gotten this, I would invite you to be still. Donít try to figure it out but be present with what Iíve said, inviting it to illuminate itself more completely to you. Because it is very important.

__________________________

"Freeze-dried picture"

From: Raj at Boston - 1992

QUESTION: I have a three part question for you and theyíre not related. One, who is Woldara? Two, what happens to the soul after the body expires?

PAUL: After the what?

QUESTION: After the body expires as we know it. And three, where have all the squid gone? Namely the Loliginidae Pealeii species along the East Coast.

PAUL: Iím sorry, this is me Paul. I didnít understand the third...

QUESTION: The third question is: Where have all the squid gone, the Loiginidae Pealeii, that inhabit the East Coast of this country. They seem to have disappeared. Do I need to repeat any of the questions now?

PAUL: No, indeed. Okay, this is me Paul. Sometimes he answers questions with images rather than words. The image relative to the squid is that they have gone into deeper locations to escape pollution or something thatís in the water that is not compatible with them. But he says they are far from extinct.

ANSWER: I am going to refrain from answering the first part of your question. The second part though, you must all understand that your soul is not like your body, it doesnít have limits. You could most accurately say that Soul, with a capital "S," is Minds, with a capital "M," capacity to sense the meanings that itóMindóexpresses. In other words, Soul is Minds sensing capacity. It is your capacity to feel the meaning of Godís Creation. It cannot go anywhere, because it is omnipresent. This means then, that there is far more of infinity for you to be having the direct experience of than you are currently experiencing. Your Soul does not inhabit your body, just as your mind does not inhabit your body, just as your love does not inhabit your body. Your Soul goes nowhere, because it is everywhere. This means that all of what you are is always present. What you have yet to discover is that all of what you are is always available to you as a conscious experience, even though you may not be paying attention.

Now, If there was a very bright light in your sky at night, let us say a vehicle of some sort, capable of moving at light speed, at a very fast speed, and you stood there gazing at it fixedly while it was there and then it very suddenly departed, you would continue to seem to see it. In other words, there would be an after-image in your eyes, even though it had departed, even though it had gone beyond your present capacity to perceive it.

And what all of you must understand is that you have been misunderstanding what happens at this point that you call death. What happens is that the individual has moved beyond your present capacity to perceive him or her. And what is left for you to apparently deal with is what we could call the after-image left in your eyes. In fact, the reason it seems to decay is the very same reason that the after-image in your eyes of a bright light decays, because there is not the original light present to reinforce the image.

Now, this is, of course, a very simplistic way of explaining it, but it more clearly expresses the truth and helps you to understand that you are never bodiless. And what I mean by that, is that you are never not identified. You are never not identifiable anymore than God is ever unidentifiable. I have said it before, that God unexpressed is a nonexistent God. There cannot be God without the infinite manifestation or experience of the Presence of God. Therefore, there cannot be YOU without the identifiable experience of your Presence.

No one abandons a body in that instant that you call death. The one who has passed on finds himself or herself as totally identified as before hand, except that whatever seemed to cause the death, if it were a disease or injury; is no longer present, because that one has the inescapable proof that the disease didnít kill them. And that realization causes the immediate release of fear of the disease and the manifestations of the fear, called disease, have not a leg to stand upon and the evidences of it disappear.

This is an important point to understand, because if you think that there can be a separation between Individuality and that which identifies it, called body; then you will not honor the body and you will also never really become curious to see what the body really is, if indeed it is the visibility and tangibility of an absolutely Divine Presence, called You. And if you donít become curious about it, you will not experience the revelation of it. You will not experience the scales falling from your eyes that cause you to have a distorted perception of your body or of your world. You will tend to neglect the body. You will tend to neglect the world. And there are even those in the name of spiritual growth who canít wait to drop the body. Now that would be suicide, because if indeed you could annihilate the visibility and tangibility of Godís Self-expression, you would do yourself in, as well as God.

So be careful when you want to rise above this world, or rise above your body, because that ultimately constitutes an act of self-denial. It also constitutes, what the Course calls, an attack on God.

Now, for some of you who are students of the Course, what I have just said creates a dilemma, because the Course says the body is an illusion and the world is an illusion. Again, there cannot be unmanifest God. God being Infinite, must be Infinitely Identified. And that Infinite Identification is what is meant by the word Creation.

Now, the solution to this dilemma comes with the very first lesson in the Course, "Nothing that I see means anything." Do not read that statement as though it says, "everything is meaningless." The purpose of that lesson is to cause you to release your convictions about what a thing is. It is to promote your willingness to abandon whatever your current definition of a thing is; whether it is your body, or your toe, or a leaf, or the planet, or the universe. Why? so that you may then become curious. "If it isnít what I think it is, what is it?" Thatís when you begin to listen, is when you say, "what is it"? And this is when your Soul comes into play. This is when your capacity to feel the meaning of Godís Creation becomes activated within you, while at the same time permission is being given to receive the experience.

If you are misperceiving something and you are believing your misperception and you are believing that it constitutes the whole truth about a thing, then all you are seeing is your perception of that thing. And your confidence that that perception is the totality of its Reality, does indeed constitute a deluded perception at what we could call an illusion, because you are not open to the Movement of the Identification, or the visibility of that thing, and thus you are not seeing it. It is as though you have taken a photograph of a river and you are saying, that is the river, while the river continues to move and be an action, a movement.

A concept about a thing is like a photograph, it is a freeze-dried image. But you say, "thatís not reasonable, I canít do that." Well, I would ask you to look at a family member who you are having difficulty with, and you tell me whether on the spot, right now, you can release them from your conviction about their unchangeableness? How willing are you to let by-gones be by-gones? How willing are you to truly expect that maybe they will behave in a more enjoyable manner? Youíve got them freeze-dried!

Now, let me ask you something else, if somebody has you freeze-dried and they are constantly approaching you based upon their attitude, their unchanging attitude about you that is not complimentary; how easy is it for you to be defenseless and loving with them? For how many of you is it not difficult to get angry, because they are not seeing you. And then tell me this, if you express the anger, doesnít it confirm to them that their point of view is correct, and that youíre still unpleasant to be with? And so, everyone locks everyone else into a freeze-dried picture, and acts toward them on the basis of the picture, and you arenít in touch with the real living, moving, changing, growing Individuality that is there.

That is just a small illustration of the fact that your convictions about what a thing is, meaning your world and your body and your universe, stands in the way of your experiencing what it Truly Is. And if you think that the freeze-dried picture is the Real thing, and thatís what you're holding to, then you are holding to something that is an illusion. The thing of which the picture is a picture, is Real and Eternal.

Thatís why it is so essential for there to be curiosity, right here! Right now! right where you are, about the things you are confronted with every day. There really is only one thing present for you to see and experience, and that is the Presence and Movement of God, called the Kingdom of Heavenófor lack of better words.

Why should we call it the Kingdom of Heaven? Because that helps you not settle for the current concept of a material world. If you will label your world and universe as the Kingdom of Heaven and you will honor that choice of words, you will either have to frustrate yourself or create frustration within yourself, by continuing to treat it as though it is not the Kingdom of Heaven; or you will have to bring into play curiosity to see where the divinity of it is.

And so, Iím using the words to promote a curiosity where most everyone tends not to be curious at all, because theyíve got it pretty well pegged, pegged well enough to function fairly well. And after all, the point is to get everything pegged so you can sit back and enjoy life; which means not have to learn anymore, not have to adjust, not have to grow.

You and your fellow man are the Christ. And the world and universe is the Kingdom of Heaven. And waking up is the result of a willingness in you to see past your definitions and other peopleís definitions, and see the essential Son and Daughter of God everywhere you look. But it wonít happen until the curiosity is there. And until the curiosity is there, there isnít really Love. The saying is that, "curiosity killed the cat," but I guarantee you, your curiosity will wake you up and save your life from ignorance and the effects of ignorance.

There is more that could be said, but that covers your question for the moment. Thatís the end of the answer.