Saturday, February 2, 2013

Just For the Love of It


The beauty of the blowing snow showers outside my window might be more enjoyable if it were not 15 degrees on a Saturday afternoon.  As things are, it is a good time to go within and manifest a new blog entry to celebrate February.  Why?  Just for the love of it.

This is where we can meet in the same space all at once.  I don’t mean a particular place, date, and time; the space of Love exists only in this moment, so if you read this three years after it was written, the space of Love is still the same as it is right now.  After all, whenever you read it, is it ‘now,’ isn’t it?

Our chosen title, ‘Just for the Love of it,’ is a particularly favorite theme for me.  If we can live so that every moment is lived just for the love of it, life will be miraculously fulfilling.  Additionally, if we can love everything we do, we will experience happiness and freedom.  Once we love everything we do, our experience of life begins to happen on an entirely different level of Being.

Sally Kempton, who I have known over half my life, wrote the book, ‘Meditate for the Love of It,’ and I agree, if you’re going to meditate, then by God do it for the love of it and no other reason.  I highly endorse Sally as a meditation teacher, for she teaches from experience and I know she is also very grounded in the scriptures.  Only a person who can actually meditate should teach meditation to others.

Take me, for example.  I am supremely unqualified for anything.  All I can do is live in the present moment.  In fact, I can’t get out of the present moment.  I’m a bit stuck here.  When I was younger I thought I was weird, that I didn’t fit in, because I didn’t know what to talk about, I didn’t know how to play all the personality games, because I had none.  I accepted that I was a misfit, and that this was my lot in life.

Then I came across teachers and teachings regarding how living in the present moment is a good thing, not a bad thing.  I learned that it was okay that I didn’t fit in; in fact, if I had ‘fit in’ it would have been a bad sign.  I learned that the personality games and egotistical melodramas were things to break free from, not to make life all about.  If I was a misfit, that was fine with me.  So far nothing has changed in this regard.

We are initiating something new and different this month.  Starting on February 7th, we will begin a 3-week in-depth Immersion in the subject, ‘Inner Growth Through Relationships.’  We will meet online together for 3 consecutive Thursdays, the 7th, 13th, and 21st.   Our meetings will be conversational and will last an hour each.  During the other days we will meet in a chat room and keep in daily contact, to the degree that we wish to.  If you cannot make the 7th, there is a package available for the 13th and 21st only.  For more information on this, please go here:


Since I have no choice but to live in the present moment, it was obvious my dharma (duty) was to help others who wished to, to do the same.  The center of this work is the Course of Training via email, which consists of reading two lessons a month and applying the principles in your own life. 

We are also now offering online workshops.  The next online workshop will be March 3, and will be the same topic:  ‘Inner Growth Through Relationships.’  For those in the Immersion, the workshop will be the culmination.  However, the workshop is open to all, whether you participate in the Immersion or not.

Some good exchanges have taken place in the recent comments, and now I will share a collection of responses to the questions of others.

This first response is regarding someone’s comments about our very first workshop, in November, in which there were a few technical glitches (we’ve improved a lot since then):

I loved these questions:  “Sipping his drink, people commenting every second on everything that is said.  Why aren't they just listening?  Why am I getting distracted by them?  Does Ram have to talk to Kay that way?  Is this what a real relationship is?  When is he just going to get to the teachings.  This is so tiring.  Everything he says is in the course.  He only calls on friends from his past, etc., etc., etc.”

Ah, the honesty, the openness—many people think these things, but few have the courage to actually express them and bring them out into the open.

That first workshop, although it was a great experience for all who participated, isn't exactly my most shining memory.  Not only was it our first time, but the platform we were using was totally unsuitable.  We have changed to something much nicer and easier to work with.  There are no longer ‘comments’ onscreen, but only D.R. on full screen.  After 3 workshops, things are starting to run much more smoothly.

I particularly loved the comment, "Everything he says is in the course." I have to admit, this one is true.  Everything I know is from the course.  If I knew something worthwhile that wasn't in the course, then the course would be incomplete.  Of course, the course has not finished for anyone yet, myself included. We are each going as fast as we can, for the Omnipresent and Omniscient Consciousness is compassionate enough to let each individual aspect of Itself progress at our own most comfortable pace.

Then the line, 'When is he going to get to the teachings?' My mind used to do this all the time around the Guru. 'When is he going to stop being so mundane and get to something substantial?  This is getting pretty boring.'

Yet, as my mind was thinking such things, I'd notice that I was beginning to experience this incredible inner energy that obviously had nothing to do with what was going on outwardly. I would go in states of deep meditation or bliss. Yet my mind is going, 'When will he get to the highest teachings?'

We don't offer workshops to present new facts and information you might have never run across. I don't know if there really is something like that. The workshop is an experience of the Present Moment, and moves us along rather quickly in our process, however we describe that process to ourselves. The Workshop is an initiation and offers a transformation on inner levels. It doesn't have the first thing to do with what I talk about.

As for calling only on friends from the past, I have to say that over half the people I called on that day were people I did not know and had never spoken with in real time before.

As far as how I was talking to Kay, Kay has known me and helped me in Workshops for more than 30 years now, and has lived with me and worked fulltime on the Course with me for the last 10 years or so. Her ego is not so sensitive that if I speak to her in a way to most quickly get things done, she's not going to take it personally and feel that she has been treated badly.

Kay understands why I speak to her in whatever way I am speaking to her. What we have developed together over 30 years is not likely to be understood by someone coming across some aspect of our relationship for the first time.

I might speak to her abruptly because that is what is needed in the moment. She understands that. She also knows that later on I will probably coo in her ear.

*****

Regarding your question, the only things that can affect us are our own thoughts, our own awareness, and where our attention is focused.  Others do not have the power to affect us unless we give them that power through believing in the other more than we believe in our Self.

We determine through what we create in inner consciousness what will be real for us in the outer world, which is basically a reflection of what we have created in inner consciousness through the power of thought, imagination, and ideation.

Others can only determine their own experience and feelings. When we blame others for our experiences or feelings we only reveal our ignorance of how the game works.

We always and invariably determine our experience and perception through what we think and choose to believe. Through describing something in a certain way we begin to see and experience conditions and situations manifest exactly according to our descriptions and beliefs.

We experience as reality what we describe to ourselves and assume to be real.

So our own experience has nothing to do with how others think or act.  They themselves are affected by their thoughts and actions, no one else.  We determine our own perception, experience, and all feelings according to what we are thinking and how we are focusing our attention.

With greater awareness, we start to see how we have created through descriptions, thoughts, and beliefs our life as it has manifested.  When we change our descriptions, thoughts, and beliefs, things change in outer life exactly according to the inner changes in thought, attitude, and feeling.

                                                            *****

I am always happy to see your comments and questions. They always come from a good place, and it is great that such inner maturity manifests in one as young as yourself.

Your comments always make it obvious that you have very good understanding. It is now a matter of refining the understanding you already have. This happens in the natural process that occurs as we progress from one lesson to the next every two weeks.

You said, "It’s fascinating to me how much earnest effort is required to consciously choose each thought so that the impact is one we would actually enjoy."

You are right. This is perfect understanding. Many people don't get the 'earnest effort required' part of the equation.  I am so happy that you have started this path at a young age, for you are understanding things that others don't understand until a much later age, if at all.

It takes a long time, through experimentation and application of the principles, to fully grasp the true meaning of certain things.  Do we understand that we are pure and perfect just as we are, that we never made a mistake or a wrong decision, that it was karma and had to happen as it did?  Do we understand there is no way to make a mistake or do the wrong thing?  Things can only happen as they are intended to.  

Nothing is random or coincidental.  The details of conscious life are blended together so miraculously, yet we hardly give thought to what Power or Intelligence magically takes care of all the details—as long as we do our part.

Keep doing what you are doing. You really do have a good understanding of subtleties, and you can develop and expand this through the process of the Course, whatever convenient form the Course appears in for you now. Remain attuned to your current lesson, and you'll do just fine.

                                                            *****

You say, '...we do positive thinking intentionality work, getting good effects, yet without wanting to, undermine those efforts when upsetting mindsets get triggered by some events or perceptions. I wonder how permanent roots can be formed that withstand ups and downs...'

In the course we focus on maintaining a single Identity that is indivisible and indestructible.  This Identity, or this inner Self, does not get triggered.  Nothing in the objective world has enough power to trigger it in any way.  In fact, it is already the 'permanent root' that has already been formed, and which very easily withstands ups and downs—in fact, doesn't even notice them.

The trouble is that instead of remaining focused on our true Self, we allow the samskaras (subconscious impressions and tendencies) to be affected by external stimuli and 'triggered' into something completely irrational and unhelpful in any way, if not emotionally negative and draining, often with the additional results of being disrespectful to others.

A large aspect of the Course of Training via email is that we are taught how to live in a nonreactive state, a state of deep equanimity.   As long as we are subject to emotional reactions, we cannot depend on ourselves to be who we are or to even know what we are doing.

Remain steadfast in your true Self.  There's no reason to keep allowing the samskaras to have their way with you forever.  At any time you choose you can put an end to it, and be Master of your own life.

                                                            *****

Your question regarding ‘how to breathe’ is a great question, and yet it is not so simple to answer as it might at first seem. There is so much to understand about correct breathing. For one thing, only if we are consciously breathing are we actually aware of what we are doing in this present moment. If we're breathing unconsciously, chances are the mind is running on prior conditioning, preventing us from actually experiencing the Truth of the Present Moment.

The breath gives us prana, the life-force that enlivens and animates the body. The more consciously we breathe, the more present we are as we breathe, the deeper we breathe, and the slower we breathe, all combine to determine the energetic level of the prana available to us now, perhaps in a way that was not as powerful or as fully available before now.

Conscious life differs for each individual according to the quantity and quality of prana (or Shakti) available to the individual—and what is available to him is exactly how much he can be conscious of or comprehend at any given moment.

Some of us are immediately open and ready. We understand the Truth with equanimity.  We have nothing to cling to, no attachments to limit us or to restrict our freedom; we experience ourselves as an energetic flow, merged with the Whole of All that happens, and all that doesn't happen as well.

The quality and quantity of prana or life-force available to us at any moment depends on our openness to it and our consciousness of it.  If we are truly open and ready, we are willing to leave past concepts behind, and to open up to a reality so expanded and pure that we see why it was impossible to ever bring it into the 'understanding' of the conscious mind.

We breathe in vibrations from the ethers around us that correspond to our own inner consciousness at the time.  If we are cheerful and lighthearted, if we are open to spiritual awakenings in any unpredictable manner at any moment in our life, then we breathe in the vibrations of others around us on a similar vibrational level; we attract to ourselves even more of the positive energy that we were putting out.  We inhale, not in the 'air' as we ordinarily think of it, but in the ethers around us, energies corresponding to our own predominant energies.

In the same way, we exhale into the ethers, into the world and to others around us, vibrational energies corresponding to what we are inwardly feeling and experiencing. If we are feeling good inside, then others around us feel better without even knowing why.

As you can see, there is a lot to explore for those who are sincerely interested.  This is why we need an ongoing, 'alive' Course of Training, as it is a way of connecting into what needs to be done next, and as a way of understanding all this in a way that is obvious and natural.  If what we need to know next is not already intuitively obvious, it soon will be—unless certain rigid or habitual concepts of the mind prevent us from seeing what is obvious.

Thoughts can easily get in the way if we don't understand them in right perspective.  The Course covers everything we need to know regarding this, to help clarify our understanding of our own knowledge and our own practice.

Yes, there is much too much to cover in this space.  This is why we have the lessons, as a guide and companion along this mystical, mysterious, and magical ride on the way to living in the experience of the Truth in each Present Moment.

For more information about the Course of Training written by D.R. Butler, and a free lesson, write: drbutler.course@gmail.com

The Course is also available in Spanish and French.  Please let us know if you prefer the info in one of those languages.

47 comments:

Karen Jo Shapiro said...


Thanks for this entry, D.R. It feels so good to do something for the love of it. In fact, I feel like reading my course lessons and coming here happen easily because I love doing it. Connecting to the course and the blog is uplifting and expansive, transformative and well.... enjoyable. Fun.

Love KJ

Angélica said...

Thanks Ram!, I'm just starting the third year of the course and try to be as consistent and committed to it just for the love of it. I love having through daily reading a way to constantly remind me and show me one way or another how to live and be in harmony with the present moment.
I loved the quote about how to breath, the inhaled and exhaled vibrations depending on my inner state. Wow! Great reminder to commit even more with my sadhana.
Angélica

maxim said...

Thanks Ram. I've been with you for many years now and consider your course and teachings a central part of my life. For the years where I lost the connection with you I felt wanting and longed for the course. Just reading it is a source of upliftment . Your current letter perfectly relates to what I'm experiencing . What I get hung up on is what is truth vs denial. If what I'm experiencing is anger, disappointment or frustration isn't that the truth of the moment? Isn't it denial to say anything else? True, the underlying self is love, light but what I'm going through may be totally opposite. This is where I get confused. I should know better after over 20 yrs!
Colette

Jimena Marquez said...

Thanks Ram for this entry so refreshing- looking forward to the classes with you. also thanks for reminding us of the power of conscious breathing. I find this tool really important so as to not deplete my energy when I work with a lot of people. when I can remember to come back to my center everything is fine.

Mayuri said...

I loved the way you put into words my recent feelings and experience : "We have nothing to cling to, no attachments to limit us or to restrict our freedom; we experience ourselves as an energetic flow, merged with the Whole of All that happens, and all that doesn't happen as well."

There have been so many changes in my life of late, that I have been studying the last thirty - forty years or so. In that time I have "been" many things... a student, a singer songwriter with a band, an art teacher in public schools, a wife, an artist - daughter, sister, friend.... There've been so many "identities" but really I can not hold on to any of these identities. They do not give me a sense of security as I find that it all changes and within a short amount of time this current incarnation will be over just as so many lifetimes have come and gone. There is something that does not change, and that is that creative flow of energy, the energy that we are. I appreciate your writings so dearly in that they help me to focus on what I feel truly matters and that which will go with us when this incarnation is over. In the meantime I intend to focus on what I love. What could be better than that? For the love of it..... With love, Mayuri

Dave Silverstein said...

"Just For the Love of It", as soon as I read those words, it brought me into the reminder that that's all there is. The outside karmic happenings are hypnotizing. Yet, when I connect simply with my heart, there truly is nothing more 'real' then that. It's a conscious reminder of how my life is a gift from God, to God and for God. Everything else is literally 'passing show'.....What a beautiful Masterpiece to behold.

D. R. Butler said...

Maxim-Collette, you ask, 'What I get hung up on is what is truth vs denial. If what I'm experiencing is anger, disappointment or frustration isn't that the truth of the moment?'

We've actually explored this in the lessons. The present moment includes all levels of being, not simply this physical plane. Most people are experiencing something on the physical level (back pain), on the emotional level ('anger, disappointment or frustration'), and mental level (whatever we're thinking, usually related to the experience of the emotional level, and which by changing, also changes our experience of the emotional and physical levels) all at once. All this is going on simultaneously. So which is the real Truth?

The Truth is none of the above. They are relative truths, in that they are constantly changing, they never remain the same over time.

The actual Truth is the inner Self, pure Consciousness, which sees and knows the physical, emotional, mental, and psychic levels, and which is untouched by any of them, as it is eternally changeless.

This is the Truth of the Present Moment.

Kyle said...

In the lessons, you offer beautiful quotes from various authors, speakers, spiritual teachers, and paths. When I read a particularly inspiring quote, I wonder if that is a sign that I should read more from that teacher or path? Or, more simply, when you share a particularly great quote from a book, do you suggest in any way that we go read that book?

D. R. Butler said...

Kyle, you know, obviously from your comment, that the Course of Training is participated in by people who come from all paths and traditions, and often people who have had experience with multiple teachers and paths. The Course is not considered to be a path in itself--it is inclusive of all and exclusive to none.

In my own way of seeing things, the Course of Training is intended to be and to contain everything you could possibly need, or that would be necessary for you to know or be exposed to. Of course, various individuals who participate in the Course read other books, visit other teachers, have their own Gurus, maintain (or teach) hatha yoga or meditation practices that has been part of their practice over the years.

In a sense, practically speaking, the Course is only a part of what you engage in or study on your process of opening and spiritual growth. You might do any number of other things, and be fond of reading inspiring books. Do whatever feels right to you.

Each person is encouraged to continue whatever practices work for them. In no way is it ever suggested that someone should not for some reason look outside the Course.

From the point of view of the Course, however, it contains everything that could be useful from other paths. This is why such quotes are chosen, because they beautifully verbalize something very important to understand.

It is never my intention, however, that you should read more of something I have quoted just because I quote it. If I quote something from a Buddhist teacher, this doesn't mean you should become involved in Buddhism (unless you already are.) If I quote from Gurdjieff, it doesn't mean you should find the nearest Gurdjieff group. If I quote from Ramana Maharshi, it doesn't mean you should necessarily research all he has written or been recorded to say. On the other hand, it wouldn't do you any harm if you did.

The Course is all about being practical and following your own heart. Do those things you feel right about, and refuse to do those things which you inwardly feel not to do. Follow your heart. When I way follow your feelings, I don't mean to follow all the temporary and constantly changing emotions. I mean to follow your heart.

Then it will always be intuitively obvious, in each present moment, what is the best thing to do. You won't even have to think about it. In fact, it's best if you don't.

kirsty said...

Thank you for the breathing lessons! I shall continue to breathe with greater understanding for the love of it..for a while, anyway! I hope.

Jimena Marquez said...

Thank you Ram for that beautiful answer. I totally get it now that it is best not to over think things. but to act and do what is obvious in the moment. But you have to get over the fear of making mistakes...that is what comes up for me. even if I know there are no mistakes...

Jimena Marquez said...

Dear Ram, you say in my.current lesson to see our major reactions so as to break free from them. I am seeing that I have major reactions with my kids, sometimes the things they do literaly drive me crazy. and then I have a reaction that I regret. any advice on dealing with little kids' emotional irrational and intense behaviour. thanks.

Renuka Potter said...

Dear Ram, I have recently spent time with a great friend working together on ceremonies celebrating the life of a mutual friend. I found that my automatic and unconscious comment or gestures/grunts made her feel that she was not good enough. Others have also found this effect from being with me. My question is, how do I become aware of this 'automatic' reaction that occurs in me so that I can appear less judgmental of others? I don't consciously feel judgmental.
Thanks
Renuka

Mandala Healing Art said...

Thank you D.R. for "Just for the Love of it"... it is so rich and resonates for me all the way to this Present moment. I experience the profound power and Bliss of comfortable, slow breathing consistently as, it is my "monitor" to the Present Moment.

Whether at home, work, and or the grocery store, and I become aware that when my breath changes from its comforting rhythm, I am aware that I am not in the Present Moment. I let go of the melodrama or samskara that seems to be disrupting my breathing, and just "be". My awareness that the response to any event slows way down, when I am conscious of my breath.. a wonderous tool in escaping the ego reaction to an event, and being able to more consistently respond with an open Heart.

And I am filled with immense Gratitude that thru the daily reading of the Lessons, I can share this transformation with anyone who reads this... Just for the Love of it! Thanks again Ram, Kay, and the Universe.. I am loving my Karma!

Sarah

D. R. Butler said...

Jimena, you ask, "any advice on dealing with little kids' emotional irrational and intense behaviour?"

I think the best advice is to realize that young children have no choice except to be irrational, intense--and I might add, self-centered.

Once the nature of young children is understood, then we understand that our only work is being in harmony with the way they are. We teach our children patience, but there are also plenty of opportunities for the parents to learn patience as well.

D. R. Butler said...

Renuka, it sounds as though you need to work on outwardly expressing your appreciation of others. Gestures and grunts are not necessarily inspiring and encouraging. If you are getting the feedback that others think you are judgmental, then you need to go the other way and show your appreciation, your love, and your respect.

JC said...

So many comments in your blog touched me deeply and rang my wake up bells. First, the title, "Just for the Love of it". Of late this has become my criteria for everything I do. This reminds me of a passage from one of the lessons of your course in which you say, something like, if you have to make a choice of what to do and you are having difficulty deciding, then ask yourself, which choice is the most loving? If there is no choice that is more loving than the other, then it doesn't matter which choice you make. I have come to use this as a guide when faced with indecision.

The breathing consciousness spoken of in this entry is a wonderful way "to imbibe", or to be used as a tool, to put forth the effort required.

Thank you and all the contributors for these knudges in the evolutionary direction.

Julian C. said...

Interesting comments about vibrations, Ram. I became more aware the other day of how I have sometimes sensed a different "vibe"around some people, and I arrived at the provisional conclusion that people are just different from each other in essence. I now sense that these are only relative differences, relative to my own experience of the "other" and my own relative perception of the time. This newer understanding seems to resonate with the truth of there only being "One", which includes only one "vibration". Any comments?

D. R. Butler said...

An interaction on my Facebook page:

Q: The only time I am brought back to the world of delusion is when I am once again bothered by an ache or pain in this body of mine that blinds me. How does one cope with this?

A: This is surprising, as most people are brought back to the world of delusion by their own thoughts. If you only have to worry about physical pain, you are fortunate.

No one lives a pain-free life. Everyone experiences pain. It is a major aspect of the physical world, especially as long as we are caught in polarities or the pairs of opposites--pleasure/pain, etc. There is no way to avoid pain as long as we are in this body. I have tried my best to do this, but at this point I am always in pain--it's simply a matter of what degree at any given time.

The best remedy I know of: stop caring about pain. As long as you care about it, it will be at the forefront of your attention. If you can grow disinterested in the pain of the body, you will stop noticing it so much, and its affect on you will be much less.

Remember, we experience what we focus our attention on.

Chris said...

Dear D.R. and Course Participants:

The comments about physical pain are important. I am in my early 40's and so I'm starting to feel the advent of creaks and achiness in spots. I agree with D.R.'s statement not to focus on it, it will literally take over your life if you do.

On the other hand, there are some things that can be done to help and which I believe almost anyone can benefit from.

What we eat has a huge effect, eating nourishing and healthy food is a must. When I eat junky food, fast food, too much sugar, too much caffeine, or when I don't drink enough water, or don't get enough sleep, the inflammation in my body goes off the charts and I get allergies, asthma, and aching joints. We all can figure out what foods work best for us, which is a fun project - to be a scientist within the laboratory of one's own body.

Also, exercise (my favorite variety of which is Hatha Yoga) is incredibly helpful. Even just taking a brisk walk once per day can make a big difference.

I know that this is all probably preaching to the choir with regards to the course community, but it's good to repeat and remember. Sometimes, amidst my busy life, I forget how important it is to drink water or to exercise and I start to really punish myself just be ignoring the basics. As soon as I start taking care of myself better I begin feeling immensely better

best,
chris

I know that these things

Jake Birdsong said...

Hey Ram,

I've been enjoying contemplating the quote from my current lesson which states the following: “More than anything, the ego wants to improve itself – never realizing that no matter how much it ‘improves,’ it is still only the ego.” What does the ego that is trying to improve itself look like? What might it do?

How does genuinely doing the work differ in appearance from the ego specifically trying to “improve itself?”

Loving the Course,
Jake

Divya said...

I am feeling very grounded these days in the state of being nonreactive to the comments of others and being in a state of equanimity. I am wondering about when being in a new relationship and wanting it to work am I ignoring things that I should be
thinking of as "red flags?" I am noticing that I am becoming very accepting of another as a reflection of myself. Not so critical and more open to communication and looking for the green flags instead of the red ones. It has allowed me to be "in love" again. I am on the third year of the course and am feeling as though I have totally changed inside of myself in how I see other people and myself.

Sylvia from Colorado said...

I have not been here for a long time to write a comment. For the love of it, is beautiful...just those 4 simple words. And your message on this topic goes right to my heart. I love your reminder to breathe consistently. My days are incredibly full, even though I am retired. I think I actually got more done when I was working and when I had two children to raise.

I totally agree with this statement you made, D.R., "In my own way of seeing things, the Course of Training is intended to be and to contain everything you could possibly need, or that would be necessary for you to know or be exposed to." This course is my lifeline! And in this month of Valentine's Day, I want you to know, D.R., what a treasure you are to me (and I know many others). I am also participating in the Immersion bundle (3 weeks of much time with D.R.). I am feeling so much love and expansion of consciousness, soaking in every word like a sponge. I am thanking my lucky stars for every incredible way you are making yourself and the teachings available to me, for the love of it.

At the risk of being repetitive, I know you and Kay are beyond busy this month, please know how much you two are loved and appreciated. Sylvia♥

D. R. Butler said...

In case some of you haven't seen it, and those who are not Facebook friends probably haven't, this is the first talk (out of 15) in the In-Depth Immersion in Inner Growth Through Relationships.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HXBlSMLu1mQ&feature=player_embedded

D. R. Butler said...

Divya, it sounds as though you are definitely on the right track. There is no such thing as having 'too much' equanimity. If you are reaching a point where you find yourself being unreactive to things that once you would have definitely reacted to, that is a great sign.

I certainly don't think we should 'look for' red flags. If there is one, it will be obvious at the time it reveals itself. We don't have to worry about whether we are 'missing' the red flags or not. It is much greater to KNOW that everything is going perfectly, and always under the control of the same Divine Power that maintains the harmony and balance of the entire universe.

Sylvia, it is always wonderful to hear from you. You were one of the first regular posters years ago when we first started. Thank you for another great share.

D. R. Butler said...

I posted this question on my Facebook page, and am posting it here for those who might not go to Facebook, or who might prefer to respond here:

Now that we have started making videos and offering online workshops and courses, I wonder what is the preference of most people--the written words, as in the lessons, blog, and somewhat here on FB--or the visual and spoken word, as in videos, online programs, and somewhat here on FB? Should I concentrate my energies and focus more on writing or speaking online? Many of you have had experiences of both, and it would be great to hear your perspective on this. I am aware that no one out there 'knows' the answer to this, but your perspective on this would be interesting to hear.

Jane said...

Ram - I'm finding both very valuable and would miss it if there were no written lessons. From the time I started the Course (1978) until it paused for a few years, I only attended 1 or 2 workshops (didn't feel as drawn towards them at the time). Now, I'm finding that the online workshops and the beautiful 3 wk Immersion are highlighting and reinforcing what I need to learn and practice in a profound way. I also love the opportunity to interact with you, Kay, and other Course participants whether by FB, Blog or during the workshops. So from my perspective, I would love to have both written and oral communication available but love you and Kay dearly and realize that you can only do so much. Will be interesting to read comments from others...Much love and gratitude to Steve too for everything he has done to contribute to the online ventures.

Colette DeVore said...

I love the theme for this blog, just for the love of it. It is definitely a theme to live by, and the course work that i have been doing with Ram has certainly aided me in getting there. My spiritual journey used to be filled with a lot of "shoulds', now it is filled with lightheartedness and laughter. This comes from actually practicing the principles in the course. I am so grateful. Love to all Karuna

Roberta said...

Thanks for your question, D.R. I am doing the Course of Training via email, have done the Sunday workshops and am now taking the 3-week immersion. I have really enjoyed the workshops and the immersion has truly brought me to a deeper relationship with myself and my world. I enjoy reading what everyone has to say and their questions are often mine, too. If I had to choose, I would choose the Course in Training, blog and FB writings. I can carry the course around with me and read it as often as I wish, wherever I am, and refer back to them later. I know the transformative value of the lessons.

I also would say, do what is fun for you.

Chris said...

Dear D.R. & Kay

I started asking for video content a long time ago because I remember from back in the day how powerful it was for me to connect with the power of the lessons through being with you in a teaching context (back then it was workshops).

Sometimes it seemed that the lessons could take on my voice, or the voice of my mind, but that seeing and hearing you breaks that up and allows me to see what's really there without my mind's projection.

It seems that they are both valuable, but I love the lessons first and foremost. Having the lesson is like having a friend I can always turn to. It's hard to do the same with video content.

My personal preference, since you asked for it, would be for you to move your blog onto your Staying In the Present site, to consolidate your offerings and that way you won't have too many channels you have to maintain. I would think about keeping the Lessons as priority #1, and do Video content (the Immersion is Awesome!) #2, and keep blog and facebook as a teaser to help people know what's behind the door when they commit themselves - which in our society involves a financial commitment.

All the best!

Kelly said...

It seems the comments of the blog has slowed down considerably this month. Any idea why?

D. R. Butler said...

Many of the people who regularly contribute to the dialogue here are presently engaged in our In-Depth Immersion in Inner Growth Through Relationships. Those participating in that are quite involved, and probably have little computer time otherwise. The same is true for me. I have posted much less in everything the last 2 weeks, and we still have another week to go in the 3-week Immersion. It has been very powerful and transforming for all of us.

Vandita said...

I can´t believe my current lesson. Thank you so much.

Harriette said...

Vandita, ditto your comment "I can't believe my current lesson." And the one before that, and the one before . . . . The lessons: guardian, guide, elevator, revealer. What a gift.

Vandita said...

Hi Harriette :):) Yes, yes, yes. One page after another it´s been talking about the last thing I had in mind, quoting a recent conversation and so on. Then I came to this one sentence where it literally felt as if those words were reading my mind. I had just done something on that morning, and it said "do not think that doing xxx means ---, true xxx is ...

x is what I did :)

Diana said...

I've read and heard how transforming your online workshops and courses have been, so I have a question I wish to ask very honestly and from the heart.

I am among those who are unable to afford the online events. I budget in the course, because I can't imagine my life without it, but why do your online offerings cost money? Shouldn't your skills in communication be as available to those of us whose income can't cover it? I've never understood the money thing and spirituality.

D. R. Butler said...

Diana, this question has been asked in every imaginable way over the years. For some reason people think things of a 'spiritual' nature should be free.

If Kay and I go to the supermarket to get some food, they don't let us take it away for free. When we need gas in the car they don't let us just come up, get our gas, and move on. They didn't give us the car for free either.

People understand these things so easily, yet spiritual knowledge is presumed to be available for nothing in exchange. Spiritual knowledge and initiations, or transformations into higher, more expanded and refined ways of seeing and understanding things, are the most valuable things in this life. Truly speaking, they are priceless.

One man whom I know is on a very limited income remarked if he can take such a course for the price of a pizza a month, then he feels very fortunate it is available at an affordable price.

We deliberately keep our minimum suggestion of an offering on the low side, so that anyone who sincerely wishes to explore principles of Truth more deeply can afford it. Participants of the course have remarked many times that it's the best deal they could ever hope to find.

It has been proven over and over again that when we don't pay for something, we don't tend to value it. If we commit to paying, then we upgrade our understanding of the value of what is available.

People have spent much more money for much less. Many will tell you from experience that this is true.

As far as offering things for free, I have given more for free than most people have ever sold. Check out the entirity of this blog, including all the exchanges in the comments. Check out the ongoing dialogue on my Facebook page. There are videos on youtube you can watch for free.

What is apparently 'paid for' regarding the Course or the online events or whatever, returns to us a hundredfold on very deep levels of being. Money is a form of Shakti, a form of energy, and a means for exchanging energy that might manifest in various ways. We invariably get more than we paid for. No one has yet been disappointed. No one can even comprehend what is available in advance. That's one of the strangest aspects of the whole thing, from my perspective.

Anyway, hopefully something here will inspire a greater understanding for you regarding your question.

Vandita said...

Diana,

If you see yourself taking next workshop, and spend some time every day seeing yourself there, in your imagination/visualization, and feeling now how it would feel to be there, you will be very much surprised to see how things happen in your life that will have you be there, actually push you to be there.

I do this all the time, please try it yourself. A few days ago I was in my way to visit a friend who is got this yoga studio, it is a very big place and she´s got a very nice store in there where she sells purses, dresses, scarfs... I was thinking about this cute purse that I had seen there on the week before, thinking 'I loved it...'.

As I arrived there she had a gift bag ready for me. In it: That exact purse, plus a pink scarf (of course I had been thinking I wanted to find some cute pink scarf for the spring). This story may seem superficial, but it works, and it works for anything imaginable, because your thought is a creative energy. It works for 'things', as well as for knowledge, it works in our relationships, it works in every single thing.

Try it out and don´t miss the workshop :) Money is not a problem, ever.

Jimena Marquez said...

Thank you Ram and Vandita for your answers, it got me thinking...when you say Vandita, money is never a problem, would you include in that borrowing money to do what you want, like taking a workshop, or making a trip. Is getting in debt, being able to borrow money a form of abundance? I am really interested in getting more clarity because sometimes I wonder if debt is the illusion of abundance but its effect in the long run is poverty...

Vandita said...

Jimena,

What I mean is that thinking "I cannot do this because I don´t have the money" makes money the problem, and it really is not. Most people would think "no, I am just talking about what is, I don´t have the money, so I cannot afford it". Again, this is creative thought in action.

If you think and see yourself in the having of it, in the enjoyment of it, then whatever you need for it to happen, it will happen in the most appropriate way. You will get the money from your work, the money will come as a gift, you will get the thing as a gift, you will have the opportunity to be there... there is a million ways for it to happen. Your only work is to see yourself there.

In my example, I would have probably bought the purse, but I got it as a gift, and this was even more beautiful because my friend was so happy to give it to me, she was so grateful (we work together and we had a great number of people come to the classes). And then I was so grateful because of the magic of it coming through her, who is such an exquisite mental creator... 'Did she read my mind or what?' So the purse was going to be mine anyway, but it came in the most beautiful way possible. And it came because I loved it and I did not make money a problem (I cannot afford...) I only loved the thing. So love is the thing :):)

This is why I say money is not a problem. But I did not mean you look for someone else to give it to you, or that you crash your credit card and become irresponsible with money.

Jimena Marquez said...

Vandita, thank you for sharing about that further, but I still wonder, is credit not a form of abundance? Like when you buy a house, it makes it possible, does it not? Or is it an illusion of abundance?

Vandita said...

Jimena,

It is whatever you feel about it :)

rico said...

Credit is not a form of abundance, it's a tool. Like a shovel that can dig the hole for the foundation of that new house if you use it too much, dig too deep, the house collapses and you may find yourself shoveling frantically, trying to dig your way out only to plunge deeper.

The judicious use of credit can be beneficial but it must be used with great care. We may need to borrow to get a car or buy a house but if we borrow more than we can comfortably afford to pay back then credit becomes a burden not a benefit. Beyond a house or a car I would only use the credit card to pay for things if I could pay off the balance at the end of every month.

Abundance has its source within. It comes from what we give. Credit is a not so subtle way of taking, if we move too far in that direction our focus is drawn towards what appears to be outside. If our attention is focused outward not inward our energy becomes depleted as we wander further from the source of abundance.

Jimena Marquez said...

Thank you for your reply Rico, it makes sense.

D. R. Butler said...

Rico and Vandita are two Lovers of the Light. When they speak, people listen.

Vandita said...

Thank you so much Ram. I made a comment on that sentence in your Facebook page because it is the most precise description of the experience of the workshops.

There is light, and being exposed to that light is an invaluable gift.

Yes, I always listen to Rico when he speaks. There is something profound and clear and true in him, in his words.

Shawn said...

Do you think the whole "you create your own reality" movement, as taught by the movie 'the secret' and especially abraham hicks, is kind of the antithesis to the principles of truth contained in the course? I mean what these folks teach is that we are here to constantly create new experiences and fulfill our desires through focused thought and emotion, which I have no doubt can be done, but isn't that by default placing us at odds with the present moment? To follow it through to it's logical end, even if we were able to manifest everything we wanted, what would be the point really? The ego would always want something new and different.