What Am I?
Our special theme says, “We do not seek a function that is past the gate of Heaven. Knowledge will return when we have done our part. We are concerned only with giving welcome to truth.”
“Our part” is spiritual practice, like the spiritual practices listed in my tip from Lesson 352. It’s interesting to note, however, that spiritual practice cannot take us across the threshold into the final awakening. We can’t make the crossing through the self’s will or effort. Bernadette Roberts wrote about this in the conclusion of her book, “The Experience of No-Self.” She wrote:
Of our own accord we cannot cross the line into the unknown; only God knows if we are ready for such a step, only he can take us across and see us through. In fact, self never crosses the line, it simply ceases to be.
However, it is important to note that she also wrote:
Having made this journey I now see clearly, that a dimension unmistakably exists beyond anything that could be described as self’s union with God… For the contemplative to regard such a union as the final or ultimate consummation of his spiritual life is a grave mistake. He is setting his sight at a midway point, which I now see is too low, too close-in, and too narrow. At this point he may be so centered in God that he is still subject to the illusion of self’s deification… Whenever possible, it is best to get beyond such a point, even when letting go means surrendering this union with all of its experiences and ensuing qualities of strength, love, certitude, and much more; for as long as there is any feeling, knowledge, or inkling that any self remains, … we have not gone far enough.
In the first excerpt that I shared from Bernadette’s book, she said that we cannot cross the threshold of the final doorway “of our own accord.” In the second excerpt, while referring to the state of awakening that the Course calls true perception, she emphasized that even there, it is best to continue surrender and letting go.
It is as NTI Revelation states:
The world is an illusion, and so everything you experience as you let go of the world is illusion also. … You are to keep moving by letting go until you find yourself with nothing left to hold onto.
This reminds me of Mooji’s story of the Yogini, who let go of what appeared to be divine experiences in order to awaken to Truth. It also reminds me of Dr. David Hawkins words in the video I shared with you recently. He said:
Having surrendered everything, there was nothing left. … There was nothing left to surrender. And then came the knowingness, “Yes, except your life.” And then I got, “This to must be surrendered to thee, O Lord.”
In other words, spiritual practice will not usher us across the threshold to the final awakening, but until the crossing over occurs, spiritual practice is needed up to and including the last moment on this side of the crossing. In fact, the closer we are to the crossing over, the more mastery we need in spiritual practice.
One temptation that can occur after achieving the first awakening is that one feels awake and puts aside spiritual practice. However, Bernadette Robert’s warns of what can happen if we make this mistake:
At this point [the contemplative] may be so centered in God that he is still subject to the illusion of self’s deification…
NTI Revelation echoes this point. It says:
True desire must lead in the last days of the thinking mind, for the thinking mind will try to disguise itself as true desire. For this, you must remain on watch. … In the hour when true desire is nearly full force, the thinking mind will look for a way to lead you from your true desire, possibly also by leading you to think you are fulfilling it.
This is what “King of Kings and Lord of Lords” points to. Whenever you feel self-satisfaction in the role you have been asked to play, know that role is not true desire. For true desire never leads to a role that is satisfactory to the self. True desire leads only from self to the wholeness of the realization of truth. …
The only way to pass through the tests of the thinking mind, without being led astray by false desire, is to remain fully focused on true desire now. There is no other way.
And so it is worthwhile to repeat that although spiritual practice will not usher us across the threshold to the final awakening, until the final awakening occurs it is advisable to continue with spiritual practices like surrender, inquiry, meditation and abiding unaffected. That’s because, until the final crossing over occurs, we are vulnerable to the subconscious ego. We need to remain alert through spiritual practice. In fact, the closer we are to the crossing over, the more mastery we need in spiritual practice in order to make ourselves available for the final awakening without turning back or slipping into a delusional false enlightenment.
It is helpful to see spiritual practice and humility as synonymous. Spiritual practice is humility, because through spiritual practice we remain the student. Humility is the opposite of egotistical self-importance. Humility prepares us for God’s final step. It is safe to say that ultimate humility is absolutely necessary for final awakening.
There is no end to all the peace and joy, and all the miracles that I will give, when I accept God’s Word. Why not today?
Please read today’s workbook lesson in full. Notice a phrase, sentence or excerpt that you feel particularly attracted to and go into it more deeply through writing.