The very fact that you’re here means that you’re looking for advice. And if you’re reading my blog posts, you’re probably also reading other people’s material. Which is great! One of the best things about the internet is that there is information at our fingertips at all times. Never before has it been easier to get information and to self-educate basically for free! And that is something to be celebrated. But obviously there’s also a lot of misinformation out there, and not everything that you read on the internet can be trusted. And especially when it comes to this kind of “spiritual” information, that can pose a dilemma. Why? Because you can find a lot of contradicting information. And if you do – who should you trust?
The same is true for the health-wellness-fitness corner of the internet. Actually, when I studied to become a holistic health coach, I learned about over a hundred different dietary theories! One person would tell us that a vegetarian/vegan lifestyle is the healthiest choice, while another person would say that we should all guzzle down lots of cod liver oil every single day (ew!). Some people said fermented foods are a miracle-healer, while others said they increase stress hormones in our bodies and should be avoided. And the thing is, all of them were super healthy! Every single one of them KNEW they were right, because it worked for them. So the question again was – who should you trust and which advice should you follow?
It becomes even more tricky when you find a person who you trust and believe 90% of the time, but then there’s a certain subject where their opinion just doesn’t resonate with you at all! It doesn’t make sense to you, you don’t like it, and you just wholeheartedly disagree with them. Does that mean that the other 90% are false as well? Even though those 90% really resonated with you?
Here’s the thing. When you believe someone’s opinion about something, when something they said resonates with you – what that means is that you already had that belief inside of you. And they are just confirming it. That’s what it means to have something resonate with you. It resonates because it’s reflecting that same belief that’s already living inside of you. So by listening to others in that way, you are really just getting to know yourself and discovering your own beliefs. It’s like they are shining a light on these beliefs that have already been inside of you the entire time. It was just harder for you to see them without having someone else shine a light on them. It resonates because it’s already inside of you.
Some of your beliefs you’re already aware of, and when you hear those expressed by others, they’re merely reaffirming those beliefs. But there’s also beliefs that you already hold but that are still in the dark. And when you have an “aha-moment”, it’s like an inner control light turns on that says, “Yes. True.” And then one more belief is in the light, out in the open. It resonates because it’s a reflection of a belief that you hold too. So it’s not like you have to find one person, one book, one guru that you agree with 100% of the time. You may never find someone like that. It’s really more like allowing others to shine a light on the beliefs you’re already holding inside of you, and in so doing incorporating them into your own catalog of beliefs.
We need each other because we have different perspectives, and from those different perspectives we can point out each others’ blind spots. It’s like you need someone to put sun screen on your back. There’s just no way you can cover every square inch yourself. It’s a blind spot. In a similar way, we have blind spots in our mind and in our psyche, and other people can shine a light on them for us. And once they’re in the light, they’re ours! They were ours to begin with. We just couldn’t see them before.
We share a lot of beliefs with others, but it will be hard to find someone with exactly the same set of beliefs as yours. That doesn’t exist. You will always disagree on some things. So it doesn’t matter that you don’t agree with everything I say or A Course in Miracles says or any other book or teacher says. The things that resonate and the things you agree with – those were your beliefs to begin with! They just needed to rise to the surface and be brought into the light.
You don’t need a “guru” – someone you agree with completely, 100% of the time. And actually, that would be unhealthy. That would be worshipping idols. And idols will let you down, because they are people. People are people. God is God. There’s a difference. You want to “worship” (whatever that means to you) God and God only. That means following your OWN beliefs; not someone else’s, no matter how holy or spiritual they claim to be, no matter how many other people believe in them. Always follow your own North Star, your own inner compass, your own inner guiding light, your own bullshit-meter, your own intuition.
If you don’t like something or resonate with something you’re reading here or in A Course in Miracles or on any other blog or book – just forget it and move on. Nothing in this world is perfect, including A Course in Miracles. At the end of the day, it’s just a book. Again, we want to go to God directly. No gurus, no worshipping of idols, of people, or of objects. A Course in Miracles certainly wouldn’t want you to worship it or blindly believe everything it says.
Simply do this: Be still, and lay aside all thoughts of what you are and what God is; all concepts you have learned about the world; all images you hold about yourself. Empty your mind of everything it thinks is either true or false, or good or bad, of every thought it judges worthy, and all the ideas of which it is ashamed. Hold onto nothing. Do not bring with you one thought the past has taught, nor one belief you ever learned before from anything. Forget this world, forget this course, and come with wholly empty hands unto your God.
–A Course in Miracles
So you see, you have permission from the Course itself to let it go. And in the same way, I’m happy to share my advice with you and to answer your questions to the best of my ability, but you shouldn’t take everything I say as fact. Always run it through your own filters.
And if you’re interested in A Course in Miracles, if you feel attracted to it, but then you come across lots of things you don’t understand or that make you feel uncomfortable – that’s one of the risks of “dabbling” in the Course. That’s why it advises you to read it from the beginning. Because otherwise your ego will find things to get offended by, whereas when you read it (as much as possible) from the beginning, you will know that it isn’t a totalitarian book, and that it is very much encouraging you to take what resonates and disregard the rest.
A lot of people find the Course very confusing at first glance. And something you should know is that A Course in Miracles is written on different levels so to speak. Sometimes it addresses your ego, sometimes it addresses your spirit. It’s hard to explain. But it just means that some things will make more sense to your ego, and other things will make more sense to your spirit (your more enlightened self). And that just goes back to the fact that dabbling in the Course doesn’t work. Doing that is very confusing and actually counterproductive.
And I can tell you from my own experience with it that sometimes I will read a passage and there’s one sentence that has ALL the meaning for me, it’s huge, it’s mind-blowing, it’s so much yes! And another sentence in that passage will either not make sense to me, I won’t understand it, or it simply won’t stand out to me at all. But then I come by that same passage one or two years later, and I will see the sentence that I highlighted, and it won’t make sense to me anymore why that particular sentence was so meaningful to me back then. But then I will read that other sentence, that didn’t have any meaning when I first read it, but now – wow – it is everything! So you know, your perception changes over time. And things that have been mind-blowing the first time you read them, will have become common sense the next time you come across them. Whereas other things that didn’t make any sense the first time you read them, will be exactly what you needed to hear a couple of years later. A Course in Miracles is layered in that way. But even so and at all times, you have permission to disagree with it.
If it bothers you that you can’t find anything or anyone you 100% agree with, I understand. Listen, we all yearn for perfection, because that’s what we remember from back home in heaven. And it bothers us, it pains us, that we can’t find it here. But that’s exactly it: we can’t find it here. Nothing in this world is perfect. It sucks, I get it. But that’s just the way it is. And the sooner you accept that this world is imperfect, the sooner its imperfection won’t bother you anymore.
The truth will set you free. But first it will piss you off.
And I believe that awareness of imperfection in general is a healthy attitude. Totalitarian systems are always tightly linked with pain. I’m Christian, but I don’t believe everything or agree with everything I see in the Bible. This might ruffle some feathers, but here’s what I believe. While there is definitely a lot of wisdom and comfort to be found in the Bible, and while there’s definitely passages that really resonate with me, that are beautiful and soothing and great advice in my opinion – I believe the Bible is an imperfect book, written by imperfect people, poorly translated, and that not everything in it is true or helpful. Some people will react with harsh anger to statements like this, saying things like, “Of course it’s true! Everything in it is true!” But I believe that anger is again coming from frustration with this imperfect world. It’s people desperately wanting to have at least ONE thing that’s perfect in this life. Just one! And when someone told them that the Bible was perfect, they chose to believe that because it was such a soothing thought. And some people are just not willing to give that up. Even though I have to assume that deep down, they know. They know it’s not perfect, they know they’re in denial, but they just want to have one perfect thing in this life, and they would rather lie to themselves than to accept this world’s imperfection. And I get it. I honestly do.
And I just want to say, books like the Bible, A Course in Miracles, and other spiritual/religious texts are incredibly dense. Thousands of pages! Hundreds of thousands of words! There is no way I could ever hold the entire bible, or the entire Course in my mind all at once. No way! So saying that the entire book is true is actually an uninformed statement, because I don’t know it in it’s entirety. Even when you do read any of these books in their entirety, you still can’t hold the entire thing in your mind all at once. So you can never say it’s 100% true without lying. I’m not gonna lie. I’m not gonna pretend. No one could never say that any of these books is perfect, because they honestly can’t know. But again, that’s my opinion. And I’m just a person. So if you want to disagree with me on that one, that’s fine.
This is what I want to tell you: Feel free to read all these books and blog posts and to listen to all these teachers and lectures – but don’t take everything they say as fact. Always run it through your own filters of intuition and intellect. And always and with everything, feel free to take what resonates and disregard the rest. You don’t need a guru. YOU are your own guru. You are smart and wise and brilliant. I encourage you to read and learn as much as you can. But don’t give up your own core beliefs in the process. Rather let this be a process of self-discovery and allow these other people to shine a light on your blind spots.
Take what you like and leave the rest.
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