January 29, 2012 – Voices in the Balcony

01/29/12 Rev. Max Lafser

“Be still and know that I am God.” Be still to know that I am God. Note the difference. We can quiet the mind and open to the presence, the wonderful consciousness that is, in whom we live and move and have our being. Things come up to be healed. We don’t have to deal with each thing as it comes up. As we vibrate with the One consciousness in the stillness, we can watch it pass by into healing.

In a work from the 14th century Persian poet, Hafiz, “All In All”, when the elephant felt unable to help the ant, he prayed. It seemed to work, and the elephant’s faith was increased and the ant was less of an agnostic. “All in all, seems things are moving ahead, working out for the best. Yep.”

When we feel like we’re just stomping all over ourselves and nothing we do is working, get still, and go into the silence. Recognize the truth of our oneness with that divine power and with each other in That single consciousness. Commit to the following agreements:

TRUTH. I agree to:
Live my mission.
Speak my truth, with compassion.
Look within when I react.
Keep doing what works and change what doesn’t.

ACCEPTANCE. I agree to:
Listen with my heart.
Respect our differences.
Resolve conflicts directly.
Honor our choices.

GRATITUDE. I agree to:
Give and receive thanks.
See the best in myself and others.
Look for blessings in disguise.
Lighten up!

January 22, 2012 – Beauty and the Beast

01/22/12 Rev. David McArthur

Beauty and the Beast is a picture of major spiritual transformation. Every character shows us a part of our self. The father represents the adult male part in all of us that seeks after truth through the mind. Beauty is that feeling part of us which is appreciation, love.

In a snow storm one night, the father arrives at a great castle where his every need is provided. The storm is the veil which keeps us from seeing ourselves, our true riches. The castle pictures the divine presence which provides and sustains us. Leaving the castle, the father picks a rose from the castle garden for Beauty. The Beast appears and declares the man’s life is now forfeit. (The rose stands for understanding, and once you have that, your life up to then is over, because you can’t go back to the way you were.) Beast lets the father go if Beauty (the ability to touch goodness) will come in his place.

Beauty appreciates everything about the castle except that she must dine with the ugly Beast every evening. The Beast is also something within us, that part where we see ourselves as ugly and frightening. It might be addiction, low self esteem, hurt expressing as anger and violence, or fear that keeps us from living our life. It is legitimate to see it as ugly and to be afraid. Going into the castle is growing into a greater knowledge of ourselves and we have power then to see that ugly painful part of our self. We have to get to know it, to see it and to become consciously aware of our self.

Beauty is allowed to go home for two months, but then doesn’t want to return to the castle. (We fall back asleep, finding comfort where we had been.) Beauty dreams (dreaming is awareness coming into our “sleep”) that the Beast is dying. With great compassion for him, she goes back. Compassion awakens us to truth. Her tears (tears of forgiveness) revive him. (Tears of forgiveness wash away the ugly, painful part which was a constant cry to be touched by the love that heals. The forgiveness comes from feeling that love.) The Beast’s ugliness falls away and the young man comes forth filled with power, wisdom– a receptivity which lets divine presence and power flow.

In this tale abundance and ugliness represent God and the Devil. But you know there is no truth in that! You know There is only One presence and One power in the universe and in your life, the all loving goodness of God. One presence! One power! And you do know “they lived happily ever after”!

January 15, 2012 – Here and Now Through Love

01/15/12 Rev. David McArthur

You are one with a presence and power that has always been and always will be. The walls, your body, are just space! Hundreds of years ago a master pointed to a boulder, saying, “That boulder out there– is it really there or is it just in your mind?” One bold monk answered that it was only in his mind. The master replied “You must have a very heavy head!” Whatever the illusion, it is what we have here to deal with. It may not be real, but the assignment to deal with it is.

We do touch what is real, what doesn’t change, and when we touch the greater reality, our journey changes. We touch it in meditation and in “the silence”,– a totally private place, deeper than our mind, deeper than our emotion. We rest in that beingness which is here, now, present here in this moment. We align and “be”, one with that state of being.

Another way is doing rather than being. It is the experience of love, of loving. That greater reality is expressed in us, through us, as us. Go into the active way with your life radiating your love. (So often it is not a first response in our busy day, but it is always an option.)

Even more active is the experience of “God is love”. That greater reality is always present and in it is total wholeness and harmony. It can’t be anything else. Your experience becomes love. Radiate your love to one for whom you have resistance. Fill your heart with love “to the millionth power” and radiate it to this person until you feel delight in that beautiful child of God. You are experiencing the greater reality. That is the presence of God and it is who you are here, now!

January 8, 2012 – Creating a Consciousness of Prayer

01/08/12 Rev. David McArthur

The situations in our world needing change can only be overcome through care. But we get overwhelmed and our caring shuts down. What shuts us down is the perception that we are separate, that “It’s just me” –that we can’t fix it on our own. But we are a part of the One and we have the capacity for transformation. It starts with the consciousness that it is a spiritual problem which needs a spiritual solution. (And we are one with that unlimited spiritual power.)

There is a physical energy that goes out to those to whom we direct our love. Some people can see it like ribbons. The love, God, is the intelligence and cannot be less. And you, too, begin to change when you send out the love and intelligence, when you step into that consciousness. The transformation comes in us when we meet and perceive our oneness. Know you are one also with the victim and the perpetrator of the situation needing change. A natural way to send them this love and intelligence is prayer, especially the Prayer of Protection. Pray

The light of God surrounds you;
The love of God enfolds you;
The power of God protects you;
The presence of God watches over you;
Wherever you are, God is!
And all is well.

What follows for you is the understanding of what it is yours to do. The mind might tell you what it takes to fix it all. But the understanding of what it is for you to do comes to you as part of the transformation. Work at the level of the cause rather than the effect. For example, living sustainably and caring for our Earth and all life on it. Choose harmony. Commit to a state of consciousness that can bring about the change “for the greatest good of all creation.” Remember, God is good all the time!

For each of the next 7 days, give yourself the experience of caring for someone you wouldn’t ordinarily. Send out the experience of care and follow it with what it is for you to do which comes to you. Watch what happens to you. The time of problems in the world is over. The good of the presence of God is right now!

January 1, 2012 – Create With Power

01/01/12 Rev. David McArthur

This year, 2012, is long anticipated. The Hopi say it ushers in a long time of peace. It is the year in which we pass through the midpoint of the galaxy. After a period of denseness, or darkness, we will pass into the light. This is a powerful energy and your new year’s resolutions have a great power behind them. Those deep-heart desires– we have the power to bring them into manifestation and you have the power now! This is a part of the purpose you came for. Now is the time.

In Matthew, verse 9, a woman’s faith heals her when she touches Jesus’ cloak. She had been living in her ailment, believing, “I am now ill. If I touch the hem of His garment I will be healed.” We are one in/with the divine power. Within that pattern is the wholeness of our being and it is within us. The ability to see the wholeness in the pattern is what brought the healing. Create from the wholeness or from the disease.

Your heart’s desire is already there. You don’t have to earn it. You can’t get bad enough to get rid of it. It’s yours. It’s already there. And everything needed to manifest it is also given. There is part of your being where it is already there, already manifesting. If nothing else limits it, it has to manifest. Go for it. Don’t wait. Things are moving so much more quickly now.

The mind says, “I have this problem. I will do this and this and this, and then I will be well, (but I am not well now).” If you want to change this you have to change your consciousness. Feeling (as touching the garment) puts the power in! Imagine to yourself, “It’s a miracle! I am totally well!”  Now. Not next Sunday; not after your next doctor’s appointment. Make the switch. Take a hold now. This is the year to express what’s dear on your heart. That’s the game you came to play. Play it! –and have LOTS of fun!