So I think I mentioned in my last blog that I studied ACIM. In ACIM, the villain is not the devil. It is your own ego. It is your own ego that sits in judgment of you. That is where your sense of guilt or your sense of greatness comes from. So I figured I was in a constant wrestling match with my own ego which seems to be in a constant wrestling match with itself.
A few years ago, I lost my last job. There was no explanation given. I was actually flying quite high. I had just received my yearly review. It was very positive and was reflected in a raise in salary. When they gave out bonuses, mine was more than generous. And then my little bubble burst. “We are giving you early retirement” they called it and “oh by the way do not use us as a reference”. They were actually monetarily more than generous there too. I still felt as if I had been punched in the gut, and hard. It felt like I had crashed and burned. And not only that, here I was – I can’t even remember – but at least 59 and all I could think about was how I had to find another job. And then… who will hire someone my age? This was a giant blow to my ego and caused massive internal struggle.
I nursed it as one would nurse a sick child. I “knew” I was a good employee. Always early to work, always performing as expected if not better, taking on extra work, smiling even if I didn’t feel like it. I was never given a real “reason” for my dismissal. Ouch!!!
I ‘blamed’ a lot of different people and unfortunate incidents that had occurred at that time. One by one, I followed my ACIM and forgave each one as they arose in my mind. Not knowing what to do with myself, I wrote and published three books. Writing a book had always been on my ‘bucket list’. They were lighthearted for the most part, full of humor and romance and mystery. I received rave reviews from those who read them but in actuality they went nowhere. They certainly did not replace the income I had lost. Another ouch!!!
In all these instances, I took a beating from my own ego. ACIM teaches that our ego is basically our own worst enemy. That is where any self flaggelation comes from. It is the cause of the punch in the gut feeling as well as the bejeweled crown that sits on our head. So who better to forgive than the root cause of all this turbulence I am experiencing. And that is where I focused all my ‘forgiveness attention’, on my ego.
And by golly, my ego more or less disappeared. At least it gave me no more delusions of grandeur, nor did it give me any more tickets on the guilt train. It more or less disappeared. It was spotty at first (and I can tell you from experience, it more or less still is). This practice though, has made me mostly, if not fully, aware of when my ego is operating. When that happens, I immediately forgive it.
The funny thing is, as my ego disappears, so does my interpretation of god. There is no judgement, for better or worse, now. This is something I always attributed to “god”. He was always judging me. “you are going to hell for that one!” “truly, I have saved you a seat in heaven for that one!” My pride would inflate and deflate accordingly along with my ego and as soon as I recognized it, the process of forgiveness would kick in.
So a few nights ago, I had this ‘aha’ moment where I realized that my ego and my concept of god were one and the same. The punishment or love that would rain down on me for my actions, I always attributed to God who sat in judgment of my every word and deed. Then I wrestled with the thought that “No God loves me” no matter what. The God of today does not judge, or so it is claimed by some. Only the God of the ancients judged. Right now it is said that Hitler is in heaven. After all, he was only doing what he thought was ‘right’. Even his own countrymen believed in him. Whereas Judas is in hell. Different time period. After all, Satan is a fallen angel, but an angel nonetheless.
Anyways, when my ego began to disappear.. when I began to forgive it, to disregard it’s judgements… God disappeared too. Could it be that God and the ego are one and the same? Thus my flirtation with atheism.
Never mind the physics or science of it all, of which I know just enough to be a danger to myself. I’ve read about Einstein’s theories and watched Mr. Kaku on the Discovery Channel. I was intrigued by string theory and am even more intrigued with M Theory even though I know little about them. I read an article once in Omni Magazine years ago that explained how thought affected the way light was perceived (waves vs. dots) during an experiment done to prove one or the other. Surprise! It appeared as both depending on what one THOUGHT or expected would be seen. Tell me that is not interesting! Tell me that does not prove the power of thought. Tell me one should not be vigilant about one’s thought processes.
I think I went off course a little bit here. What I wanted to say is that by eliminating the ego (by forgiveness or otherwise), my experience is that my concept of god went right along with it. It has been the most liberating (and joy filled) idea I have ever had. I would never tell you or even suggest to you that this is something you should pursue. (That is your ego’s job!) I am only trying to explain my own experience with it.
I’m sure there are those of you who would judge me as ‘simple’ and/or ‘wrong’. That’s okay with me. I like ‘simple’ and I question the meaning of ‘wrong’.
It is here I can see “God Bless You All” on this page. And then immediately following “Hah!”