IV. Seeking and Finding
- The ego is certain that love is dangerous, and this is always its central teaching. It never puts it this way; on the contrary, everyone who believes that the ego is salvation seems to be intensely engaged in the search for love. Yet the ego, though encouraging the search for love very actively, makes one proviso; do not find it. Its dictates, then, can be summed up simply as “Seek and do not find.” This is the one promise the ego holds out to you, and the one promise it will keep. For the ego pursues its goal with fanatic insistence, and its judgment, though severely impaired, is completely consistent.
- The search the ego undertakes is therefore bound to be defeated. And since it also teaches that it is your identification, its guidance leads you to a journey which must end in perceived self-defeat. For the ego cannot love, and in its frantic search for love it is seeking what it is afraid to find. The search is inevitable because the ego is part of your mind, and because of its source the ego is not wholly split off, or it could not be believed at all. For it is your mind that believes in it and gives existence to it. Yet it is also your mind that has the power to deny the ego’s existence, and you will surely do so when you realize exactly what the journey is on which the ego sets you.
- It is surely obvious that no one wants to find what would utterly defeat him. Being unable to love, the ego would be totally inadequate in love’s presence, for it could not respond at all. Then, you would have to abandon the ego’s guidance, for it would be quite apparent that it had not taught you the response you need. The ego will therefore distort love and teach you that love really calls forth the responses the ego can teach. Follow its teaching, then, and you will search for love, but will not recognize it.
- Do you realize that the ego must set you on a journey which cannot but lead to a sense of futility and depression? To seek and not to find is hardly joyous. Is this the promise you would keep? The Holy Spirit offers you another promise, and one that will lead to joy. For His promise is always, “Seek and you will find,” and under His guidance you cannot be defeated. His is the journey to accomplishment, and the goal He sets before you He will give you. For He will never deceive God’s Son whom He loves with the Love of the Father.
- You will undertake a journey because you are not at home in this world. And you will search for your home whether you realize where it is or not. If you believe it is outside you the search will be futile, for you will be seeking it where it is not. You do not remember how to look within for you do not believe your home is there. Yet the Holy Spirit remembers it for you, He will guide you to your home because that is His mission. As He fulfills His mission, He will teach you yours, for your mission is the same as His. By guiding your brothers home you are but following Him.
- Behold the Guide your Father gave you, that you might learn you have eternal life. For death is not your Father’s Will nor yours, and whatever is true is the Will of the Father. You pay no price for life for that was given you, but do pay a price for death, and a very heavy one. If death is your treasure, you will sell everything else to purchase it. And you will believe that you have purchased it because you have sold everything else. Yet you cannot sell the Kingdom of Heaven. Your inheritance can neither be bought nor sold. There can be no disinherited parts of the Sonship, for God is whole and all His extensions are like Him.
- The Atonement is not the price of your wholeness, but it is the price of your awareness of your wholeness. For what you chose to “sell” had to be kept for you, since you could not “buy” it back. Yet you must invest in it, not with money but with spirit. Your spirit is will and will is the “price” of the Kingdom. Your inheritance awaits only the recognition that you have been redeemed. The Holy Spirit guides you into life eternal, but you must relinquish your investment in death, or you will not see life though it is all around you.
Here is the ego’s version of love: Love will turn on you. Love will promise one thing and give you another. Love will demand all your choice goods to be sacrificed to it. Love will be jealous and cruel; Love will curtail your freedom and liberty. Love will make up a bunch of rules and then punish you when you do not keep them. Love will demand your best and it will never be good enough for it. And yet we will seek Love. We will crave it. We will yearn for it. We will sing songs about it and write poetry about it and we will think we have found it, but it will not be what we really want. This is the promise of the ego – we will make of love a bitch, but we will keep barking for it, worshipping it, and idolizing it anyway.
When we follow the ego’s search for love, we find that the ego’s version of love simply does not satisfy us. We are created in love, by Love, and for Love. Without love we cannot be. So when we go chasing love through lust, through how good-looking someone is, to how good they are in bed, or in any way, shape, or form to “what a good catch someone is,” we are going to be bitterly disappointed. The best catch in the world is going to let us down for what we really want is beyond our humanity, it is beyond our ego, it is beyond the flesh senses. And ego simply cannot give us this.
Chasing after the ego’s version of love leaves us empty and disappointed, but that is exactly what most of us do. We can do this in socially acceptable ways, or we can do this in socially unacceptable ways, but we will never find what we are looking for because ego does not recognize love or know how to respond to it. Ego fears love, for love is truth and Love is God.
The journey we take with Holy Spirit leads us to truth. The promise of Holy Spirit is: “Seek and find. Ask and I will answer. Welcome me and I am there.” There is no defeat, there is no disappointment, there is no unfulfillment in our journey with Holy Spirit for it is one of love and there is no fear in love. When we walk with Holy Spirit we not only walk in Love, we arrive in Love. We are never deceived, we are never mocked, we are never manipulated or made to do silly things to prove our love or our worthiness. Holy Spirit does not make monkeys out of us, will never lead us astray, or steal our joy for Holy Spirit loves us with the same love that He has for God.
If the Kingdom of God is within us, we may ask why our return to the Kingdom is referred to as a journey. Jesus calls it a journey because the perceptual world has taken the place of our Home for so long that we have forgotten where it is and how it can be found. We have been programmed to look without and engage in the ego’s seeking but never finding. We try to find it in our religious institutions, we try to find it in our religious texts and rites and rituals, we try to find it by being “good,” or engaging in “good works,” but we will be seeking for it where it is not.
We must remember how to look within. We have forgotten how to do this for so long that we do not believe the Kingdom of God is where it has always been. This is why Jesus refers to this as a journey, for Holy Spirit leads us past the perceptual world and guides us to our true Home. This is the Holy Spirit’s function, and it is also our function. We follow His guidance by guiding others to look within, to remember where the Kingdom of God resides. Holy Spirit’s message and then our message is: “Do not try to find the Kingdom anywhere it claims to be in the perceptual world. There is no holy land, there is no holy place, there is no holy man or holy woman that can stand as a substitute for the inner Kingdom that belongs to God within each and every one of us. Stop investing in the outer realm and go within to the Kingdom of God.”
Holy Spirit was given us by the love of our Father Who wills nothing but life for His beloved Sons. We have nothing to pay for the life that God gives us. He does not want our sacrifices, there are no flesh gifts that would mean a thing to God, there is no money exchanged. He is Spirit; He is Truth. If we think that blood, meat, money, or offerings of any kind could ever please Him in any way, we do not know God. If we think that giving up candy, cigarettes, alcohol, or sex is going to manipulate God to love us more or bestow His favor upon us instead of those who did not give these things up, we cater to an ego perception of God. God does not require us to do silly things to prove our obedience to Him. If we hear voices or suggestions in our mind that expect us to wring money out of people for the causes of God, or build things for God, or destroy things for God, we need to really question the veracity and the validity of what we are listening to – because God only requires one thing from us and that is our love and our devotion, our return to His Kingdom. And His Kingdom is not in the outer world. Everything of the ego has a big price tag attached to it, but God’s Kingdom costs us nothing. It just is. We do not have to travel to foreign lands, we do not have to build cathedrals, we do not have to develop programs, we do not have to destroy our enemies. We simply return our minds and our hearts to Him and we encourage others to do the same.
Jesus clarifies to us in paragraph seven that Atonement is not the price of our wholeness. Our wholeness is a given. It is as God is for God created us like Himself. He did not create us lacking in any way for that is not the nature of the Father. Atonement is the price of our awareness of wholeness. When we split our minds between truth and fiction, we lost the awareness of our wholeness. We started believing we were something else. We started believing that Love was something else. The lies became so muddled with the truth that it became impossible for us to save ourselves from the realm we made from this hellish scramble. Atonement is simply a restoration to our awareness that we are Sons of God. Yes, we have gone astray but no, we have never lost our Sonship; God has not turned into something mean and nutty just because we did!
We cannot be disinherited. God does not make something and then turn His back upon it, punish it and use it for a whipping post. God is Love and His love and devotion to all of Creation is the only thing that is true about Him. To believe anything else is to believe in fiction, in myths, and in ego interpretations. This will not affect our salvation, but it will affect how long it takes for us to accept it. As long as we invest in the fiction, we deny ourselves the reality of God and are still lost, still uncertain, still trying to find truth in fable. As long as we are putting our faith and our trust in that which does not heal, that which does not save, that which does not love, we will not perceive Life though it is all around us.
In your personal devotion today, ask Holy Spirit to guide you into life eternal. Relinquish all investment in seeking outside of yourself for that which can only be found in the Kingdom of God within. Prayerfully consider your investments in the perceptual world and ask Holy Spirit to reveal to you how to invest in the reality of God’s Kingdom. Ask Holy Spirit for the Vision of Christ and for the Mind of Christ so that you can realize that your function and the function of Holy Spirit are one.
Above all be blessed and be full of the joy of the Lord, for He has come, and He is risen, and He is here – within us and all around us. Knowing this is what sets us free.
 A Course in Miracles. Chapter 12 The Holy Spirit’s curriculum. IV Seeking and finding. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).
For daily Workbook lessons visit www.i-choose-love.com courtesy of Linda R.
Audio credit: www.eckiefriar.com