From Love Without Conditions by Paul Ferrini
Let me begin by saying that I speak through you only to the extent that you are willing to relinquish control. In that sense, you are not special. I can speak through anyone who has that willingness.
What you hear has a great deal to do with what is already present in your mind. Each person who opens to my voice will hear it according to his own perceptions and preconceptions. That is inevitable.
The desire to communicate with me is essential to opening the door to my presence. I will not force myself upon anyone. The relationship with me is voluntary and must be initiated by each person when he is ready.
I am as close to you as you would have me be. That is because I am already a thought within your mind. And everything that I am proceeds from that thought, just as everything which is not me proceeds from a different thought. This you must learn through experience.
Some claim that I speak through them, yet they are listening to a different voice. My voice never condemns or makes fearful. My intention is to bless everyone. I would have each of you know once and for all that you are not guilty except in your own mind, and that imagined guilt can and must be undone.
My teaching is a simple one: I teach the forgiveness of sins. I teach that sin itself is not real. It seems to be real only because you believe that you can be injured. You believe that you are the body, and so when the body has been injured, you believe that an injustice has been done to you.
I understand that it is hard for you to relinquish that belief. Yet that is what I ask you to do. You are not the body, for the body is born and dies, and you are not born, nor do you die.
You are no thought of limitation, for every thought that limits you is a body that will begin and end. The body is just the scope of your beliefs. There are dense bodies and light bodies, but all have a beginning or end. All are subject to some form of self conscription.
I am a thought without limitation, for I am ever expanding into the formlessness of God. There is no form that can contain me. I have joined with God in perfect forgiveness. I am free of guilt. I am free of grievances. I do not believe that I can be wronged, nor do I believe that I have the power to wrong another. For I know without a doubt that every being has equality in God.
I know that it is hard for you to believe this, for so much that you see in your world suggests inequity. But these inequities are simply of your own making. They are an untruth that you sustain.
You need sustain them no longer. Demonstrate that they are not real by extending the love of God to every one of your brothers. Only in this way can the kingdom of God be experienced on earth.
Do not concern yourself with what others do or leave undone. It is not your responsibility to evaluate their thoughts or their actions. Simply be responsible for how you think and act. For if you think and act with God you will influence others without saying a single word.
Charity is found only in self-responsibility. Do the very best that you can do for yourself and others and leave the rest for God to do.
You are not responsible for the choices that others make, nor are they responsible for yours. However, you can and must learn from one another, for what you choose is not that different from the choice your brother makes. You make many of the same mistakes.
Mistakes are opportunities for learning. To condemn your brother for making mistakes is to pretend to be mistake free, which you are not. I have asked you before and I will ask you again: which one of you will throw the first stone?
You can release your brother from the judgment you would make of him within your own mind. To release him is to love him, for it places him where love alone lies, beyond judgment of any kind.
Mastery of your own thoughts is essential for your enlightenment. For it is in your thoughts that you choose to walk with me or to walk away from me.
I am constant, unlike you. I will not walk away from you. I stand always at your side, waiting for you to acknowledge me.
If you would be like me you must learn to think like me. And if you would learn to think like me you must place every thought you think in my hands. I will tell you if it is helpful or not. Unhelpful thoughts must be eliminated. That is the essence of mind training. Only thoughts that bless and recall us to truth shall be retained.
My teaching has been and will continue to be distorted because it threatens every thought which is false. And so threatened, false thoughts take hold of the teaching and seek to mold it to fit their ends. It does not take long before the words attributed to me are the opposite of the ones that I have said.
This is why I ask you to be vigilant. Do not resist this distortion, attack it or seek to discredit it, for that will just make it stronger. But be clear in your own mind and reject the false for the sake of truth.
A single false idea can bring the mind that thinks it to despair. But a single true thought restores the kingdom. Therefore, choose your thoughts wisely. And if you are uncertain what to think, bring your dilemma to me.
Surrendering to me is unlike any act of surrender you can know in the world. For the world would use your surrender harshly to control you, but I would use it gently to release you from falsehood and give you back your true Self.
Those who do my work empower you to love and affirm yourself as you are right now. Those who work against me find many faults with you, which they would fix. They would make you dependent on them for your salvation. Do not accept such lies. Learn to discriminate. No one on earth has a better answer for you than the one you will find through trust in yourself and in me.
The Core Issue
There is no one else who is as hard on yourself as you are. Like all your brothers and sisters, you suffer from a basic sense of inadequacy and unworthiness. You feel that you have made terrible mistakes which will sooner or later be punished by humans in authority or by some abstract spiritual authority like God, or karmic law.
These unresolved issues of self-worth are the conditions of your embodiment. In other words, you are here to work them out. You selected your parents to exacerbate your guilt so that you could become conscious of it. Thus, blaming them for your problems will not help you remove the conditions you have mutually placed on love. The only way out is through your expanding awareness of your own guilt and fear-based beliefs and patterns of interaction.
Seeking someone special to provide the love your parents weren't able to provide will not help either. It just raises the temperature in the pressure cooker. Don't be surprised if the mate you choose is the perfect embodiment of the parent with whom you most need to heal. You cannot but come face to face with your own wounds. Parents, spouses and children are here to help you see your own need for healing, and you are performing the same function in their lives.
Looking for unconditional love in a world of conditions must inevitably fail. Since all your brothers and sisters are acting out of shame-based patterns, they cannot offer you the love you know that you deserve, nor can you offer it to them. The best that you can do is raise each other's awareness of the love that is necessary and begin taking responsibility for giving it to yourself.
If you do not take responsibility for bringing love to your own wounds, you will not move out of the vicious cycle of attack/defense, guilt and blame. Your feelings of rage, hurt and betrayal, all of which seem justified, will just fuel the fire of interpersonal conflict and continue to reinforce your unconscious belief that you are unlovable and incapable of loving.
You must learn to see the extent of your own self-hatred. Until you look in the mirror and see your own beliefs reflected there, you will be using every brother or sister in your experience as a mirror to show you what you believe about yourself. While there is nothing wrong with this practice, it is not the shortest or the easiest way home, since there is always the tendency to think that what you see is somebody else's lesson.
If you want to step outside the vicious psychology of the world, you must stop the game of projection. This game hides your unconscious death urge behind a facade of blame and conditional morality. It is ironic, indeed, but at the very instant at which you are proclaiming your innocence at your brother's expense, you are also reinforcing your own feelings of guilt and inferiority.
There is no way out of the circle of blame but to stop blaming. Yet, be prepared. If you would step off the wheel of suffering, you may find that you aren't very popular. Those who don't join in the world's game of projection are the very first to be attacked. If you learned nothing from my life, you must have learned this!
Anyone who would acknowledge his own fear without projecting it threatens the world's game. Anyone who would own his murderous thoughts and seek to find their roots within consciousness threatens the moral fabric of society.
In human society there is a right and a wrong. Those who do right are rewarded and those who do wrong are punished. This is how it has always been.
My teaching threatens this basic assumption. At the most superficial level it challenges the idea that wrongs should be punished. In the face of the call for retribution, I have stood and will continue to stand for forgiveness.
At a deeper level my teaching challenges the very idea that someone should be condemned by his behavior. If someone acts wrongly, it is because he thinks thoughts that are false. If he can realize the untruth of his thinking, he can change his behavior. And it is in the interest of society to help him do this. But if punishment is brought, his false ideas will be reinforced, and guilt will be added to them.
You have heard the expression "two wrongs do not make a right." That is the essence of my teaching. All wrongs must be corrected in the right manner. Otherwise correction is attack.
To oppose, seek to overpower or argue with a false idea is to strengthen it. That is the way of violence. My way, on the other hand, is nonviolent. It demonstrates the answer in its approach to the problem. It brings love, not attack, to the ones in pain. Its means are consistent with its ends.
To make wrong is to teach guilt, and perpetuate the belief that pain and suffering are necessary. To make right is to teach love and demonstrate its power to overcome all suffering. To put it simply, you are never right to make wrong, or wrong to make right. To be right, make right.
You cannot love in an unloving way. You can't be right and attack what's wrong. Error must be undone. And since the root of all error is fear, only the undoing of fear will bring correction.
Love is the only response that undoes fear. If you don't believe this, try it. Love any person or situation that evokes fear in you and the fear will disappear. This is true, not so much because love is an antidote to fear, but because fear is "the absence of love." It therefore cannot exist whenever love is present.
Most of you understand a great deal about fear, but very little about love. You are afraid of God, afraid of me, and afraid of one another.
Why are you afraid? Because you believe that you are neither lovable nor capable of loving another.
That belief is the only belief that needs to be changed. All negativity in your life will fall away as you undo this simple erroneous belief about yourself.
You, my friend, are not what you think you are. You are not simply an accumulation of all your negative beliefs and actions. That is who you think you are, but that is not who you are.
You are God's son, even as I am. All that is good and true about God is good and true about you. Accept this fact, even for an instant, and your life would be transformed. Accept this about your brother, even in this single moment, and all conflict between you would end.
What you see is a direct result of what you believe. If you believe that you are guilty, then you will see a guilty world. And a guilty world will be punished and so will you.
"God will bring you down. God will destroy the world. God will have His revenge." These, my friends, are the thoughts that you think. These — blasphemous though they be — are the absurd ideas you would attribute to me! Fortunately, I understand that this is just your not so subtle way of beating yourself up.
It is a delaying maneuver. In time, you will tire of it. It will not be long before you begin to reject the whole concept of guilt — individually and collectively — and aspire to come home
My friends, I await that moment of complete honesty and responsibility with joy and certainty. On that day, when you see your good and that of your brother as one and the same, all that separates you from God will fall away and you will stand beside me in all your splendor.
Then you will know God's love for you beyond any doubt. Then you will know that She never abandoned you, even in the height of your insanity when you thought it was She who would punish you and destroy your world. Then you will know the power of your mind to create, and then will you choose to create with God, not apart from Her.
The very word practice invites misunderstanding. What would you practice except that which you already know? And what do you know except guilt, fear and attack? Certainly you do not want to continue to practice the very beliefs and reactions which lead to your suffering!
So what shall you practice? Perhaps you could begin by simply practicing awareness. Practice being aware of your guilt, your fear and your attack. Do not disguise them, deny them, or project them onto other people. Merely look at these phenomena as they arise within your consciousness.
When you feel angry or depressed, simply ask "Why am I angry? Why am I feeling the need to defend myself? What am I afraid of? Continue to ask these questions until you begin to see the source of your anger and fear. Once you get through these layers of emotion, ask yourself "what is my guilt here?"
What guilt you ask? All negative emotions in your life arise from your unconscious guilt/shame. This must become conscious. It must be brought into your awareness so that you can release it.
Your feelings of inadequacy and unworthiness create your fear of retribution. If you believe that there is something wrong with you or that you have done something wrong, you will be afraid of being punished. And if you are afraid of being punished, you will defend yourself against all imagined attack.
Whenever you feel that someone is questioning your self worth, you will be ready to pull the trigger.
This whole scene of guilt and retribution is happening only in your own mind. If you project it, you will bring others into it and you will need to work it out together. This just ups the ante. Working something out with another when you are not aware of your own complicity in the event is unlikely.
Better to begin by bringing an awareness to your own thoughts. For not only will you find that guilt is the root of all suffering, you will also find that self-forgiveness is necessary. Without self-forgiveness, there is no release from guilt. So the drama of redemption is also happening only in your own mind.
In your mind, you establish your innocence or guilt. It does not matter how many people abused you. Blaming them will not help you. You are the judge who pronounces sentence. And so long as you are blaming someone else for your problems, you are refusing to offer forgiveness to yourself.
Judge and jury live within your own thoughts. You established your guilt and now you must dissolve it. Until you undo your guilt, you cannot find your innocence. That is what the forgiveness process is all about. It has nothing to do with forgiving others. It has everything to do with forgiving yourself for establishing your guilt.
This is the realm of practice. There is no situation where this work cannot be undertaken. The whole scenario of your life is territory for self-inquiry. Bring your awareness to every thought and every feeling and you will soon find the source of your guilt and your subsequent suffering.
No one can escape this work. It is an essential part of the curriculum of awakening. The sooner you realize it, the easier it will be for you.