The two emotions - fear and love

Thursday, Nov 05, 2020 1706 words 7 mins 34 secs
An A Course in Miracles Blog  © 2020 Paul West

There are really only two modes of functioning of which you are capable. It really does boil down to a simple "this or that" decision. Either you are in love, or you are in fear. Love has only one nature, but fear masquerades as an untold number of illusions. All of them are fearful and they represent egotism. But they are all essentially a withdrawal away from love.

To love is an outward expression. It is extension. Love shines and radiates out of you towards others. This love seeks to uplift, empower, heal, nurture, strengthen, join, share, communicate, connect, give, supply, support, make whole. Love is always given/extended through you from God and goes out to your brothers and to the world. It is an outward transfer which entails you loving and joining with everything.

Love, and all expressions of love, are miraculous and healing. Love is powerful, it is happy and joyful, and it is peaceful. It is meaningful. Love is sanity. Love heals and resurrects. And love can reverse all forms of suffering. Love shines like a bright light, and as you give it, you receive it because it is shared and for all. As you give it, you shine, and in this shining you illuminate both yourself and others, and in this light you can see, and what you look upon is illuminated with love and is lovable.

The opposite of this is fear. Fear is separation, contraction, withdrawal, and inward focus. Fear is selfish, victimizing and victimized. In fear you feel afraid, angry, upset, hurt, weakened, sick, tired, stressed and damaged. In fear you pull way from others and the world, you hate and attack, you feel imposed upon and controlled, and eventually die. Fear is an attempt not to extend love, not to give life, and to be alone. In fear you will feel alone, cut off, isolated, imprisoned.

In fear you will feel like you've been taken hostage, all the happenings around you will seem like they are against you with no escape, all problems will seem insurmountable and unfair and cruel, and you will feel like you're in a dark pit of hellish despair that you can't get out of. It's as if you've been taken hostage by a tyrannical ruler who has imprisoned you and kept you in a dark hole in the ground. And everywhere you turn there will be enemies and haters and attackers and prison guards.

What it boils down to is a very, very simple difference between the two approaches to life. Each approach entails a different kind of seeing. Fear places you in false perception, where the whole world seems like a prison. Love places you in true perception, where the whole world is harmless and forgiven.

Love entails giving in order to receive. As you give love, as you shine your light, as you extend, you yourself are uplifted. "Miracles benefit both the giver and the receiver." Even if you start out in fear and lack, efforting to love more will empower you and lift you out of darkness. To love is to fulfill your natural function. You are supposed to shine. You are supposed to radiate. You are supposed to give and extend and reach out to join with others in love. AS you do this you automatically are protected and saved and it raises you up into the light where you are happy and at peace.

When you don't do this, you must recoil and withdraw into fear. You will step back and not give. And it will now seem that the world has taken from you. A gap will form in between you and others. You will develop enemies and opponents. You will hate some of them and hate yourself for hating them. You will become weak, afraid, lost, alone, and suffer in the dark. You will feel isolated and sick and like no-one is on your side. The world will loom heavily over you as if it has power to make your life hell. And all the while you will be trying to get, to take, to have, to own, to possess, to be special, and you will feel selfish. And everything offered by love will be missing.

It really is as simple as if you have only one choice. Either you give love or you lose love. It's like there's an emotional beacon in you, in your heart, where either your heart is giving outwardly and energy and light are flowing out of you in support of others, or your heart is cold and empty and you are withdrawing and escaping as an enemy of the world. Either your energies express and extend outward, or you hold yourself back. Either you feel loving and warm and bright, or you feel hateful and cold and dark.

You get to make this simple choice at all times. You can switch on love at any time. You can feel it in your heart. Even in the midst of any other illusion of suffering. And yet the ego is expert at making it seem like there is no way out of suffering and love will not help. Can it be as simple as that your heart is not switched on? Of all the many seeming problems, stresses, upsets, emotions, can it be that simply loving more will cure it?

The ego would say no, it will tell you that each of these problems is unique and needs a separate solution. And what it thinks it needs it tries to get. And yet getting it does not make you happy. Underneath all the complicated forms in which fear arises, and all the ways you can feel unloved, there IS in fact only simple solution to all of them. Simply love more. It lifts you out of all upset feelings, it brightens you, makes you feel happier, stronger, more confident. It dispels fear and erases upsets. It heals you.

Being 'human' can seem so complicated but actually what's happening in your mind is incredibly simple. You are like a piece of machinery whose function is to extend the love of God to others. That is all. "The only function of spirit is to extend God's being." You are host to God and extend God. That is all. Your only choice is to continue extending God at all times, or separate yourself off into isolation and fear, in which you will experience all forms of suffering. And at any time you can switch back into fulfilling your function as the light of the world.

The only way to be happy is to fulfill your function. To love. To express love. It's completely natural and produces miracles. It is holy relationship. It is God's will. It is God's will that you love and be happy and healthy. Love makes this possible and guarantees your health and perfection. Either you extend God's love, or you will attack yourself and make yourself sick.

This is why Jesus says "teach only love for that is what you are." It's an extremely simple choice, between love or suffering. To love is to heal and to be happy. To love your brother is to uplift and resurrect him along with you. Your focus should not be on yourself and your needs, or your body. These vanish when you love your brother. Focusing on your body makes it sick because mind is supposed to extend PAST it to others. The light has to shine, to produce health. The light shines PAST sickness and bodies, because it is forgiving.

To love or not to love, that is the question. And only love can make you happy.

"Learning must lead beyond the body to the re-establishment of the power of the mind IN it. This can be accomplished only if the mind EXTENDS to other minds, and does not ARREST ITSELF in its extension. The arrest of the mind's extension is the cause of ***all illness*** because ONLY EXTENSION IS THE MIND'S FUNCTION. Block this, and you have blocked health because you have BLOCKED THE MIND'S JOY. "

"Salvation is a lesson in giving, as the Holy Spirit interprets it. It is the re-awakening of the laws of God in minds that have established other laws, and given them power to enforce what God created not."

"We have said that you have but two emotions, love and fear. One is changeless but continually exchanged, being offered BY the eternal TO the eternal. In this exchange it is extended, for it INCREASES as it is given. The other has many forms, for the content of INDIVIDUAL delusions differs greatly. But they have one thing in common; they are all insane. They are made of sights which are NOT seen, and sounds which are NOT heard. They make up a PRIVATE world, which CANNOT be shared. For they are meaningful ONLY to their maker, and so they have no meaning at all. In this world their maker moves alone, for only HE perceives them. "

"You have but two emotions, yet in your private world you react to each of them AS THOUGH IT WERE THE OTHER. For love cannot abide in a world apart, where, when it comes, it is not recognized. If you see your own hatred AS your brother, you are not seeing HIM. Everyone draws nigh unto what he loves, and recoils from what he fears. And you react with fear to love, and draw AWAY from it. But fear ATTRACTS you, and believing it is love, you call it to yourself. Your private world is filled with the figures of fear you have invited into it. And all the love your brothers offer you, YOU DO NOT SEE. "

"You have but two emotions, and one you made and one was GIVEN you. Each is a WAY OF SEEING, and different worlds arise from their different visions. See through the vision that is GIVEN you, for through Christ's vision, He beholds Himself. And seeing what HE is, He knows His Father. Beyond your darkest dreams, He sees God's guiltless Son within you, shining in perfect radiance, which is undimmed by your dreams. And this YOU will see as you look with Him, for His vision is His gift of love to you, given Him of the Father FOR you."

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