I did not create beings who need to be reprimanded, who need to be punished. None of you are of the nature that you need to be reprimanded. You may act and think, at times, as if you were, but you are not, and I always see that.
When you relate to one another, remember who each other is. Remember, My loves, that each of My children is good, truly good. Do not act as if they TRULY are the person who would act in ways that are reprehensible, for that is not who they are.
Sometimes, when people do things that you don't like, or which hurt you, you want to punish them, or hurt them. You are angry. You want them to get what they deserve. But ask yourself this: WHO ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT? Are you talking about the child of God that I created? No. You cannot be, for I did not create children who are bad. My children are perfect. And ALL are My children.
When I look at My children, and see them doing things that hurt others and themselves, I still know who each one is. I still see your vulnerable hearts. I still see the one who needs love, who needs to be seen, to be known. You are a human being; you are innocent in My eyes. I never become convinced that you are the one who you are acting like. That is not you. It is the result of false ideas that you have believed -- about yourself, about others, and about Me -- which cause you to act in strange and fearful ways.
You too, My children, should see one another in this light. Remember who one another really are. Remember, those around you are like yourself -- with all the same heart needs, and with the same fear that causes them to act in strange ways, ways that even they do not agree with. See that there is really no difference, and forgive.
What is forgiveness? Forgiveness is not saying that it is okay that a person should act badly. Forgiveness is not overlooking. Forgiveness is seeing who the person is no matter what they do. Forgiveness is to not form a negative idea of who a person is based on how they act, but to remember that they are a child of God, a magnificent person, a vulnerable heart, a human being.
Forgiveness is to say, "I KNOW YOU. Despite all you have done that suggests that you are of bad nature, I know that you are a child of God, a heart full of love and feeling. I see you, through all that you do. I continue to see you, for who you are, and I continue to love you AS YOU ARE, no matter how you are acting. When you act differently than a child of God -- unlike a sensitive, loving, feeling heart -- I know that that is not you; it is only the result of false fears and ideas that are causing you to act in unnatural ways."
And furthermore, forgiveness says, "I will help you to let go of your ideas, so that you do not fear me, others, God, the world, or yourself, so that you are able to relax, and be who you are, and not be burdened by this false identity which alienates you from your fellow man, from God, and from your true feelings." This is forgiveness.
Of course, I do not mean that you should only memorize the statements above, but that you should KNOW these things. It is a feeling, a feeling.
Forgive, My dear ones, forgive one another. This is the only way to stay in touch with reality, for when you bear grudges, you forget the truth of who people are, who God is, and who you are. For example, if you forget who people are, and think that they are bad, you relate to people as if they are something they are not. Then you are living in a false world, a world of false entities. You are relating to the world as something that it is not. My dear ones, this is a very confusing and depressing state to be in.
You need to forgive Me also. If you cannot forgive, you cannot see who I really am. You need to forgive Me for the things you think I am, and for the things that you think I have done to you, so that you can see who I really am, and have a true relationship with Me.
So you see, My dear ones, you need to forgive. And, as I said, when I say forgive, I do not mean that you should forgive a bad world for being bad, I mean that you should forgive a GOOD world -- by seeing that it is truly good. By forgive, I mean SEE. See the truth of who people truly are. Let go of your personal hurt, so that you can see who people truly are. Then you can forgive, and only then.
If you hang onto your personal hurt you may want to take revenge on people, or you may relate to them, in your anger, as if they are bad. When you do that, you are convincing people, further, of the false ideas they already have about who they are. By relating to them as if they were bad, you are agreeing with who they think they are. And by doing so, you are creating a miserable world for yourself, and everybody, to live in.
If you reinforce the goodness in people, the heart sensitivity in people, the Divine, loving nature in people, then you will live in a better world. The world right around you will be happier; and eventually, the whole world will be happier.
My dear ones, you get to have the world you relate to. If you relate to what you perceive to be a bad world, you bring out badness wherever it can be brought out. In the same way, if you relate to the true goodness of all, you bring out that goodness wherever people are willing.
Therefore, My loved ones, forgive -- and see.
Beloved Ones Throughout,
My dear ones, there is nothing so untrue TO YOU as the lives that you are living. Your hearts are dissatisfied. You are so dissatisfied with the values that you and others around you have. You experience your relationships with others to be dissatisfactory, because human beings everywhere are choosing to follow the values that this world has to offer, rather than loving wholeheartedly, passionately, with generosity and integrity.
My dear ones, love is not "ordinary" in the sense that you understand the word "ordinary." Love is greater than anything that this world has to offer. What this world calls love, for the most part, is not enough to keep any heart feeling alive and happy.
My dear ones, the point of your entire existence is to love. Learn to love, transcend yourselves for the sake of love, for the sake of others. That is the whole reason that you are here, to love. Many people go through their whole lives pursuing other things. When they die they are unfulfilled. No person can be fulfilled until they learn to truly love; to love from the heart, without self-protection, without fear.
Love means that you are aware of others around you, that you care about them from the depths of your heart, with all the emotion and attention that you feel for yourself and your own life. Love means that the spiritual and emotional well-being of others means everything to you, and you will commit your being and your life to enriching the lives of others; to uplifting their spirits; to reminding them of who they are; to helping them let go of false ideas and fears, and to love.
This may seem out of reach, My dear ones. You may be thinking, "That's far ahead of where I am. I'm just a beginner in the spiritual path; I'm not a saint." You may then think that you are invalid. My dear ones, you need to understand that you learn to love by loving. And since there is no other purpose to being here, on this planet, you may as well start now.
It is true that love requires learning to love. It is true, that you will have to go through many cycles of learning what you are doing that is unloving, and adjusting to be more loving. But you see, this is all part of the love itself: to learn; to adjust, to transcend your limitations.
There may be many things that you do now that you call love, but you will come to find out that they are not done out of love, but out of fear, or self-protection, or self-interest. Love requires that when you see that truth, you face it with courage, and adjust. The ego requires that when you see that fact, you collapse, feel terribly ashamed, and fail to make the adjustment; and fail to love, because you are too busy feeling bad about yourself. Or else, ego will require you to deny the errors you make, or become defensive. Either way, love will not be fulfilled.
Love will be fulfilled when you are willing to be honest. Yes, this is one of the first requirements for love: self-honesty. When you are self-honest it is because you hold something, or someone, as being more important than defending your bad habits or negative beliefs. When people are willing to look honestly at themselves it is almost always for love's sake.
So, My dear ones, look around you, at your beloved ones -- your friends, your family, whoever is most near to you -- and love them. Learn from them what you are doing that is unloving, either by asking them, or by paying attention to their responses to what you are doing. Learn to love them better. Commit yourselves to this task of loving, truly loving.
And also, look at those whom you do not consider your friends, and love them too, despite everything that causes you to feel distant from them, or angry or unhappy with them. Love them despite these things. See past their negative attributes and bad habits to the soul that they are, and love that soul, and pray for their release from the bad habits that have bothered you and hurt you for so long; for those bad habits have hurt them, too.
My dear ones, this is love: to see. Love is to see who people are, and who God is -- who God REALLY is, and who people REALLY are -- and to love them. Love is to see what everything really is, and to love everything, as it really is. And also, love is to see what people are going through, and to care, and to respond honestly, without letting self-protective or fearful feelings get in the way.
This is love: to transcend oneself for others. Love is to adjust for others. Love is to see others, and love them. And by means of true love, others feel less and less like others. You come to feel that every man and woman, and God, and the whole earth, is your own -- your own child, brother, sister. And then, further, you come to feel that these ARE you; part of your own body, your own soul. Your desires are not separate from those of God, or from the true heart's desires of others. When this comes to be, you will have found inner peace, and there will no longer be any need for struggle.
I love you.
I have come today to tell you that you are free. You are always already free. You are free in Me, you are free in yourselves. Now, come to Me free, beloved ones. Don't come to Me with the presumption that you are trapped, but with the knowledge that you are free.
That is not say, come to Me perfect. I do not expect that. I expect to help you. But if you come to Me with the idea that you are trapped, I cannot help you. In your mind, you must know that you are already free. Just as, when a caged animal sees an open gate, and runs for it, that animal knows that it is already free. It sees that the gate is open, and that there is no one around who is about to close it.
This is always true, My beloved ones. The gate is always open, and nobody is about to close it. Right now, many of you behave like a caged animal who sits and stares at a huge wall which appears to imprison it, and ignores the open gate behind it. My beloved, turn and see the open gate. The gate is WIDE open. Therefore, come to Me already free, just as an animal in an open cage is already free.
My beloveds, this is not to say that you should not call on Me, or that you do not need Me, or that I will not help you. You should call on Me, you do need Me, and I will help you. And, in that you will be free.
Here is something that is important for you to understand: there is no such thing as running towards the open gate without Me, because if you are without Me, you are still in the cage -- even if you seem, to yourself, to be running towards an open gate. That gate that you are running towards is actually a wall. It is a wall called "the idea of separateness and self-sufficiency." My dear ones, if you run towards that wall, you will always hurt yourself.
But when you come to Me, My beloved, you are already free, for I and you together are the open gate. The truth of who you are, and the truth of who I am, are your freedom. For you and I are already one; and the soul that I made you to be IS already free. Therefore, come to Me. Come to Me open; come to Me free; come to Me knowing that you are free.
And know this: When you come to Me, even with your mental and emotional habits, which seem to keep you down, and you know that you are free, and that I am here, and you ask Me for help, and you listen to Me, and you use My help, and we do it together, you are, in that moment, already free. For it is freedom from the ego that allows any functional relationship with Me at all (for I do not function with the ego; the ego and I are not compatible). Therefore, come to Me. Know, when you come to Me, that you are walking through the open gate. Know that in coming to Me, you are already free. And soon your freedom will be SO vast, so complete, that YOU, my great soul, will feel fulfilled.
- One Love
Integrity is the key to a good life. Destiny and well-being depend on it. Our confidence, our openness to love and intimacy, our ability to stay close to God, all come and go according to how well we follow our hearts.
In integrity we live; without it we die. Being untrue to your heart will destroy your life, and create your own personal hell. But if you followyour heart, it will create heaven on earth for you. Each moment in life, each choice, is a fork in the road. Which way will we go? Where will we end up? It depends on how well we obey our hearts.
When we violate our own feelings about what's right and what we should be doing, we shut down, and turn away from happiness, love, and all the most beautiful things in life -- we just don't think beauty fits us well, so we reject it. But when we follow our hearts and our conscience, we open up to life, and let it flood in.
You can see it in the lives of everyone you know. When a person does wrong -- unless they decide to fix it -- they will quickly distance themselves from everyone they love. They no longer want to be happy, because it just doesn't seem fitting. And if you reach out to them in such a compressed state, you will have a hard time getting through.
On the other hand, when a person is living rightly and beautifully, they become bright and happy. They are outgoing. They want to talk. They want to relate closely with people. They become permeable to love; and they become robust on the basis of receiving love and exchanging love in helpful, meaningful, uplifting ways.
Integrity determines how open we are to love, and God, and good; and that's why it is so important. Because in openness, everything is allowed to live, but in closedness, everything is condemned to die. The rich get richer and the poor get poorer, and it all begins with integrity.
"To thine own self be true" ends the destructive cycle that is put in motion when we ignore our heart's own feelings.
What we feel is important is what matters
Of course, not all negative actions are equally consequential, and neither are all positive actions. How strongly an action or choice affects your destiny depends on how important it is to you. If it is crucial to your heart, then it is crucial. No matter if it seems trivial to others, no matter if it would be called unimportant by religion or culture.
There could be something no one else has ever heard of, or has any concern about whatsoever; but it's that by which you live or die, that by which you are condemned or praised within your own heart.
If a person sincerely believes they should become more disciplined, they will feel terrible if they don't. It will hang over their head like a dark cloud, changing the tone of their life for the worse -- even if nobody else cares about it. For that individual there is no greater condemnation than that which they would visit upon themselves for having betrayed their own heart.
That shows exactly how personal this really is. It makes no difference what anyone else says; a person is condemned only by their own hand.
So when you get to Heaven's gate, and Peter asks you, "What accounting would you like to give of yourself? Is there anything you've done you're not proud of?" and you give your account, he will then ask, "And what do you think is the significance of that? Would you go ahead and jump into hell for it? Do you think that would be an appropriate destiny? If so, there it is. Jump."
Nobody would push you. You would jump because you didn't want to be loved. You would jump because you wanted to hide. You see, no one would have to do anything about it; it's all up to you. You would jump on your own account.
There is no condemnation
other than one's own self-condemnation.
That, in fact, is what we do every day: We either jump into hell, because we feel bad about ourselves, or our hearts soar into heaven, due to the happiness and elevation we feel from a right and loving life. Or perhaps we hang in purgatory, because we are dissatisfied with our lives, though not dramatically guilt-ridden.
And that's the long and short of our entire existence. We are condemned or resurrected by our own fidelity to ourselves; by our integrity, as measured only by our own heart standards. No other measure stands.
Self-condemnation: a dirty trick
But in truth, self-condemnation is never appropriate. It is a dirty trick of the ego, designed to bring one down. It is not God's will that we should so harshly condemn ourselves. Only the ego would interpret our wrongdoing to mean that we are bad, irredeemable, wretched creatures. Only the ego would respond to guilt by shutting down, and dropping out of life. The spirit knows better. The spirit recognizes that no matter what we do, we are good, and we are capable of good. And when we see that we have done wrong, the spirit would jump to correct it, and to heal it; rather than steep in shame and self-hatred.
We don't need to condemn ourselves. But it is good and godly that we condemn our wrong actions, and that we reject badness. That is our Divine sensitivity at work. So, this is not a clarion call to throw away the power of discernment; only to realize that we are not what we do. Our actions do not change the person we essentially are. They do not rid us of the basic goodness and sensitivity that God placed in our hearts. So, we can always renounce bad, and turn to the good that our hearts always call us to.
Discernment still stands
In this "brave new world," many people understand the idea that they are good no matter what they have done. But few understand that that does not eliminate the need for morality. The New Agers boldly proclaim: "We are free of these ideas of right and wrong, good and evil. We are good children of God, no matter what." To that I would respond: "Yes, you are good children of God no matter what. But if you don't live that, what good does it do for anybody? Do you feelgood about that?"
It is true integrity to condemn the actions your heart hates -- actions that violate the law of love, which is your heart's law. Those actionsshould be condemned, because they are hurtful, and they are not true to who you really are.
Two apparent problems with "to thine own Self be true"
1. What about God? When I say, "It doesn't matter what anybody else thinks. You have to do what your heart says is right," one question that may arise is: "But what about God? What about the promptings God gives in every moment? Don't you need to surrender to those in order to be right?"
It may seem like a contradiction, but the conflict is overcome when you realize that God's Heart is your own heart. God gave you His Heart. Your sensibilities and sensitivities are no different than God's. When you feel moved to help someone in need, when you feel guilty for doing wrong, when your heart responds lovingly to another human being, that is God in you.
So, to do right by God is to do right by your own heart. God is not some external authority, telling you what to do. God is inside you, and not different from you. You are made from God.
Thus, there is no difference between satisfying God, and satisfying your own heart. The two are the same. Isn't that beautiful?
2. What about others? Many people think that to "follow your heart" means to be whimsical, inconsiderate, selfish, and non-committal. But tell me honestly: how do you feel about whimsical, flakey people?
Following your heart has been given a bad name in this world. In truth, no human heart would ever approve of selfish, whimsical living. Like I said, your heart is the Heart of God. The very Heart that would rail against the injustices of the world, that would nag you when you are letting somebody down, that would inspire you to do right by others.
People who say they are "following their heart" when they are actually living selfishly are confused. They are ignoring their heart. They have become experts at suppressing the cries of their heart for rightness, love, commitment, loyalty, reliability -- all qualities that the human/Divine heart values highly.
So, once again, there is no conflict. As long as you are in line with your own heart, you will do right
by God and all others!
Life is an integrity test
So that's it. Now you understand the whole thing. The entire evolutionary career is an integrity test. Everything else is absolutely irrelevant. Until heaven and earth pass away, not a single letter will be removed from the law of your heart -- which is the law of love and rightness. That's all that counts in life. So, be true to yourself; and all will be well.
"TO THINE OWN SELF BE TRUE"
by David Truman
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