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Sunday, June 15, 2008

A Course in Miracles - 6

This posting is based on what I have learned from the "A Course in Miracles" seminar on the 14th and 15th of June 2008 in Singapore by Dr Aaron Lim. This is the last of a six weekend lecture series occurring once every two months. The notes is written as in the first-person for easy reading, but it is not an ad-verbatim recording of what Dr Lim speaks during the seminar.
Warning: This posting contains opinions that may be considered unacceptable by some people. If you are easily offended by unconventional views about religion and spiritualism, then DO NOT READ FURTHER THAN HERE. If you do, then do it at your own risk! If you do not agree with the views expressed below, it does not mean that you have not 'arrived', rather it just mean that you 'do not agree'. Meanwhile, try to be open. There are lots to discover about ourselves when we are open. Do feel free to leave comments. BELIEVING IS NOT NECESSARY!
[To keep the text lean here, I will not include subjects that were covered in the previous ACIM lectures. If you want to read about those subjects, you may refer to the notes in the previous posts. You can use the 'Search' facility in this blog].
Day 1 Morning
We are coming to the end of one year since we started "A Course in Miracles" (ACIM). This is the sixth weekend I have been in Singapore for ACIM. Tomorrow, I shall do a summary of what we have covered through the year. We have learned the concepts in ACIM and now we have put them to use. It is also then that we understand our 'weakest link'.
I often use examples from my experiences with my family. I use my family because some people get offended if they think I am referring to them. Incidentally, if you feel offended by anything, then ask yourself why. However, try to stick to the concepts that we have learned and not get led astray.
Think of it, 65 years ago, I was not born and so I couldn't have been offended. Those type of feelings are not real. Even the physical body is not real. (Anything that is not permanent is not real. Only Love is permanent.) It is only when you believe in it that you are in it. When the physical body expires, whatever that seemed real will cease to be so. We wouldn't even know exactly when we expire, the same as we do not know exactly when we fall asleep every night.
Question: But what if we know that we are already dying?
Reply: We know we are leaving as much as that we are coming. Just like before we were born in this world, preparations were already made for our arrival. Death in one realm would be but birth into another realm.
Whatever that is considered 'physical' is only physical in that realm. So, all that we consider 'physical' is not physical to spirits from another realm. In their (spirits') realm, what is 'physical' to them are not physical to us. So, we can scare the spirits, as much as the spirits may scare us, as to them, we are the 'spirits' or ghosts.
Every realm has their limitation. Only our mind does not have limitations.
Those who say they are having conversations with God are not talking to God. God does not carry out two-way conversations. God does not judge and does not discriminate. It is the same for the ACIM book. It is written in communications with a higher being.
Everything we respond to, we are responding to our past. Our reality is based on our past.
In the 31 Planes of Existence, we are in Realm 5. Any realm below our realm is 'hell' to us. To the animal realm, like a cat, we are amazing and in heaven. To the higher consciousness, we are in 'hell'. All the 31 realms are in us. If the lower worlds in you disappear, you are in Nirvana (the euphoric state). Then, there is no time, no object and no subject. 'I' and 'you' disappears. Nirvana is the highest level of consciousness.
Question: Has anyone experienced Nirvana?
Reply: Yes, in sexual orgasm. When in orgasm, you don't ask "What is the time? What is the place you are in? And there is no 'self'. This experience cannot be described.
That is why we keep wanting to go back to this state again. But no matter how, it wouldn't be the same. So we keep going back and it turn out to become an addiction. It is not possible to get into the same state unless it is replaced by great Love. When that happens, everything that we see is God.
Imagine if you are in such consciousness 24 hours a day! That's why highly enlightened people do not need to have sex to experience Nirvana, where there is no self, no place and no time. Isn't it blissful?
This morning, before coming here, I went to the nearby Kuan Yin Temple to observe people praying there. They all pray in many different ways. Some talking to Kuan Yin for a length of time before placing their joss sticks on the urn. It's all in their mind. Ultimately, they are going inward to their true self, and whatever inside will manifest itself outside.
Some devotees, not happy with just talking to Kuan Yin, would continue to do the same at with Lord Krishna at the Hindu temple next door.
Question: Can you give other examples of bliss other than from sexual orgasm?
Reply: From drugs, alcohol or any other addictions. But this is not desirable, as you become enslaved.
Question: Does attachment to meditation cause pain?
Reply: Any attachment will cause pain.
Question: Do we have to keep reminding ourselves to be loving?
Reply: Yes, in the beginning, until it becomes our second nature and we don't need to be reminded.
It is like my own experience. I come from a kampung, where people are poor, loud and ungraceful. I am proud to be from the kampung, but still I want to live a more graceful and gentle life with more abundance and smiles.
When I went to the USA as a student, I took on many different jobs: I was a dishwasher, taxi-driver, catalogue delivery boy...etc. Then, when I worked in Waikiki Hotel, I started to see some soft speaking unhurried guests. "How did they achieve that?" I wondered. Later, I learned that these people have residual income - what I taught you in another seminar "Rich People Poor People". Did you do something about it? *grins and giggles*
Anyway, I wanted to walk like them (these refined people), eat like them, sit like them...etc. So, I decided to frequent the cafe in that hotel. I started writing my postcards there at Liberty House and observed how these people behave. At first, it felt very unnatural, as I felt like a kampung boy - that itself an illusion. Why should you should hold the tea cup with only two fingers? Why the cups are so tiny? Why not have a big mug for the tea instead?...etc.
The same way, if you want to live in another spiritual level, at first, it will be hard.
Question: Will any attachment cause pain? How about helping people? How do we distinguish the point where it becomes an attachment?
Reply: When the other person's problem does not end up being your nature. For instance, Kuan Yin will listen with empathy, not sympathy. Devotees go to Kuan Yin temple to talk to Kuan Yin. Kuan Yin just listened without judgment. After talking, the devotees feel better. The problems becomes clearer in the mind. Kuan Yin didn't do anything.
Question: How about attachment to spouse and children?
Reply: It will cause you pain, as it is an illusion. You will notice that highly spiritual people has a life. They are not bogged down. Less enlightened people look for others to give them a life.
When Mosses spoke to God, he was talking to the Light. He heard, "I am that I am". It refers to the state where there is no space, no time and no self. In this state, all is one, and all is honored.
Question: Who is this person that is manifested?
Reply: When I was born, I had no name and I was given a name. If I don't like my name, I change my name. I don't exist in a permanent state and therefore am not real. Even the cells in our bodies are entirely replaced every seven months.
That spouse you call 'spouse' is not in a permanent state. But many people expect their spouse to be the same since the day they met or got married. That is the cause of your problems and pains. You had wanted your spouse to remain unchanged.
For instance, if the wife has always seen the husband as a pillar of strength and one day if she happened to see her husband in a weak moment or see him crying, that will affect the relationship. Or if she had always looked at her husband as a 'banker', one day if he no longer have an income, then there will be major changes and pain.
Having no permanence does not mean that you don’t have inherent reality. Problems are there because we are dealing with the past. We want that person to stay there, giving no room for change. We setup ourselves up for pain. For insance, I have just bought a new Mercedes. It can be a painful experience or a joy. If another car park too close to mine, there can be pain. I can turn the pain into joy. All the pain come from the meaning I give it to it. The car itself is neutral.
I used to be very angry with my father. I saw him as my financier to me, support me and he is 'my everything'. Then I gave thought to it and one day decided to give new meaning to 'my father'. My father was an orphan at the age of nine; he is a child of little education; a child with a lot of responsibilities; and he grew up lonely and afraid. As I gave him a new meaning, I became more forgiving and loving towards him, without changing my father.
So whenever we are feeling pain, we have to go back to Lesson One of ACIM. It says that there is no meaning to anything other than the meaning we give to them. Also in Chapter 1, it says, "There is no order of difficulty in miracles. One is not "harder" or "bigger" than another. They are all the same. All expressions of love are maximal."
Question: Page 472, Lesson 339 "I will receive whatever I request"
This is because you created your own reality. You gave it time and space in physical body. Sai Baba’s mind is not in time and space. He can manifest things in time and space. You have exactly what he does. However, if we become confused with what we want, then we will still get a confused result. The Universe has no judgment and will give you what you asked for. There is no such thing as a 'good karma' or 'bad karma', but just 'karma'.
Question: What if one is looking for a boy friend or girl friend? Wouldn't it need to take two to make a relationship?
Reply: Yes it takes two. But given time and space, a relationship can be built.
The more loving you become, time collapses. Love transcends time and space. The less loving you are, time expands.
Be the observer, not just a busy participant. As you observe, life will be clearer to you. How can you be an observer and still participate? An observer has no attachment to the outcome. He just observe things as they are. It is an illusion, but it is a game I choose to play. The illusion become real when you choose to play. For instance, it is only when we choose to believe in time, that watch shops become meaningful to us.
Divorces are often seen as sinful and that God will punish you if you do so. There are cultures what considers it a taboo. You can adopt that belief or you can also see it as "the season is over" and move on. Rocky marriages are painful.
The future is up to you to create. What happen is you created a pain and you create another pain to mask this pain. You keep on asking for pain amid confusion, though you did not consciously ask for it.
For example when you ask for more money, you won't get more money because you come from a mind of "lack". And since you always get what you ask for, you get 'not enough money'.
[TIME OUT: I found this funny video on Youtube. Now careful, this is sorts of thoughts that you OUGHT NOT TO HAVE... ]

To ask effectively, just say “I have enough”—Be grateful.

Pain comes because we don't know who we are and what our thoughts can manifest.
Question: So shouldn't "Ask and we shall receive" be changed to "Declare and we shall receive" ?
Reply: Yes, that is a good one.
Gratitude will always give you more.
Sar: I read somewhere that says, "If you are not thinking like God, you are not thinking at all."
Yes, good one.
Say what you want your day to be. It is difficult only when you let others determine what your day will be. So be the first to come forward to greet others and smile. Smile for yourself and not let it be determined by others.
Cindy put her hands up and said with a grin: If kena scolded by the boss jia jialat already still must smile? (Translation: You mean I must still smile even if I got a severe scolding from my boss?)

Ah, many of you get confused between work and self. Don’t confuse ourselves with a contractual arrangement with who you are. That is just an illusion. However, you can still say things in a loving way.
Question: What do you think of the current rise in prices of oil and what problems it will cause to the world?
Reply: Good. I am glad you asked this question. I feel sorry for many people because they have cut back on their lifestyle. SMSes were sent among many people in Malaysia to go and fill up that tanks before the price rises. By average, each driver will save about twenty Malaysian Ringgit (RM20) (about US$5). Can you get rich over RM20?
I am not saying you should waste things. People can’t be rich because they have a mentality of lack. People are reacting not thinking. So be careful with your thought. If you are getting what you get now and it is not desirable, probably you have asked for it unconsciously.
Technology will help to overcome the energy crises. You see because of the high price of oil, there are now more initiatives to develop renewable energies. Do you know that if the US is going to cover the entire Nevada desert with solar panels it will provide all the electricity that it needs, including those for its industries? But they are not doing it yet, because the price of oil is not painful enough to justify such alternatives. It may come a day when the price of oil will get so high that it will flip prevailing decisions and then start the common use of alternative fuels.
[Time out: For those of you curious about what some technologies can do for you, read some of the past posts in this blog below:


Be careful with your thoughts. Some are culture bound. For instance, there is this saying (in Hokkien) that goes, "Pai pai ang, ma si ang" - that means "Bad bad husband is still a husband." Or, "Bo bor, chin kang kor" - that means "No wife, much hardship."

These are sayings that are burned into our subconscious and if we are not careful, we go into manifesting such thoughts.


Page 470, Lesson 336-Forgiveness lets me know that minds are joined.
ACIM is about Forgiveness. Unfortunately, somehow in the Chinese culture, revenge is a virtue. When we want to do harm to some people, we end up being hurt ourselves.

When things are half baked, we cannot eat them. For instance, when we cannot eat a half baked bread. Similarly there will be confusion when you are moving from one level of consciousness to the next level. It is a state of confusion, where you may find yourself losing interest in many things that you were once interested in. You may find yourself going through a shaky experience. You will have to stop your judgment during this state. The truth will then set you free. The truth is that you are Pure Love.
It is like the Starship Enterprise in Star Trek exploring the universe and going through a worm hole connecting two universe. During the time in the worm hole, there will be turmoil and all the instruments will fail to work, then as it got through the worm hole and into the next universe, everything resumes and hums smoothly again and calms down.
You know that you are Pure Love at the head level, and therefore react according to old habits that cause you trouble. As you move towards being pure love everywhere, people will be attracted to you. Everyone loves to be with Pure Love, as it is like being in sunshine. When you are Pure Love, even your SMSes will be different. You will ask how the other person is and not jump straight into 'activity'. All expressions of love are maximal. So, put love first.
For instance, put love first before the kids go to school. If you do that everyday, they will love to come home.
Lack of self-love, self-worth, self-dignity means you are afraid of something—like business, account, or job. The fear is sticking with you. Stand up for yourself in the most loving way. For instance, you can say, "I would love to be with you but not in this way…". So, you can still love the person, but make it clear that you can't tolerate the behaviour.
Most of us do not understand how the Universal Law works. All our thoughts are registered very precisely. Not a single thought that you have put our are not registered. This is called the Archasic Records. Whatever you send out, it will come back to the sender. The sender will then harvest his thoughts. That invisible thought is very powerful. You should not think very lightly of this. For the Universe, there is no big or small thought. They are just thoughts.
We may think that we only make agreements in business, but actually, we make agreements all the time. I always make it a point to stick to my agreements. If you don't fulfill you agreement, then you wonder why things are not working.
In this class, how many have broken their agreement? Whether it is a one year or one hour. An agreement is an agreement as far as the universe is concern. We are harvesting our fruit from our own sowing. We are harvesting former crops now.
If you have a big emotion about something, you have to look at yourself. Check where in your life you are not fulfilling your agreement.
For most people, life is not all that smooth. It is chaotic. It is only smooth in short spurts.
Page 489 The Laws of Chaos - the War Against Yourself.
Suppose you are an impatient person. Instead of kicking the car, if you are alone you may be kicking the trees, the dog and so on..
The 1st Chaotic law is that the Truth is different for everyone.
Examples are plenty in religion, each one says things differently.
Love is our nature. Love always seek itself. An 'affair' is love looking for itself. When a man goes home to a persistently nagging wife, it will come a time when he seeks his solace elsewhere. It could be in a bar with another woman, or it may not even need to be a person. It could be a place, like a golf club or any other sanctuary. If a person wants to leave, it means there is another source where he thinks there is more love.
The 2nd Law of Chaos, dear indeed to every worshipper of sin, is that each one must sin, and therefore deserves attack and death.
Many who are worshipper of sin are religious people.You can’t offend God, unless it is not God. Example are religions that claim exclusive access to God, that only they can save you, nobody else can. Their idea is to make everyone a sinner then they will have to pay to redeem themselves. Even if there is no truth in the concept of sinner, many people believe it. God cannot be wrong and it doesn’t judge.
The ego only takes. It values what it takes. This leads to...
The 4th law of chaos: if the others are accepted, it must be true.

It is just it is well-trodden does not mean that it will lead to the right path. What if the first person on that path was lost?
Most religious people's prayers amounts to "Give Me" and "Not Enough". The fallacy is that you must take before you have. The truth is that if you give nothing to the Universe, you get nothing.
Most people's prayers are about 'horse trading'. Sometimes there will be animal sacrifices or food offered during prayers. They think God need their two goats sacrificed!
Instead, you can pray, "Dear God, what can I do for you today?"

Do that and you will be surprised what you will get. Everything that you wanted you already have it.
Send your children to school so that they can add value to their life and other people's lives, not to 'get a job'. Wake up each day and ask, "How can I increase my value today?"
Spirit always want to give. Anytime you want just to take, you will create enemies.
The whole thing is about Awakening. Just work at remembering you are Love. Insane thinking says there are two truth. Different people has different perceptions of the truth. However, there is only one truth to the Truth.
Page 617 Seek Not Outside Yourself
For it will fail, and you will weep each time and idol falls. Heaven cannot be found where it is not, and there can be no peace excepting there...
Many 'fall in love' with another person. It doesn't work. By that, you think you are not 'whole'. You are already whole, so there is no such thing as this is my 'other half', or even worse my 'better half'. You fall in Love with One (not in Love with the person). We are looking for fulfillment in everything. You will always meet and fall in love with that aspect of yourself.
Women tend to respond from the heart. Men tend to respond from the crouch. Most men wants to own. A woman wants to be owned, until ownership becomes too tight, and the soul wants to be free.
When you can see everything as a part of you, then you are free—The goal is your awakening.

The majority of people are not 100% Love and hence would tend to be in a biological-physical relationship. There is nothing wrong with a biological relationship, it is for biological function.

When a relationship no longer works, then it is time to leave. If 'divorce' sounds too painful, just think of it as the 'seasons are over'. Leave each other respectfully. When we argue, we are looking to be right. All your answer are only within you. Eventually everything else that serves no purpose must go. Learn to be a happy Learner.
Question: Why is a book like ACIM written in such a convoluted way? Since the authors are connected to the source, it should be more clearly written.
Reply: It is convoluted only if your mind is twisted. Simplicity is very difficult for twisted minds. (272.2.3). It is simple if you are an observer of life. Do you know I haven't read the book. Yes, I have to confess, I have not read the book. But if you ask me any paragraph in the book, I can explain them.

My comment: But I can tell you that Dr Aaron Lim can explain many complex subjects in a very simplified way. I have not met another person that can explain such subjects better.
God created the Universe which includes me. I already know the Universe. (It is a matter of remembering.) Listen to that aspect of yourself called the 'holy spirit'. Where is the Holy Spirit ? The Father, the Son the Holy Spirit is you. That aspect of you, the Holy Spirit, knows everything. All I need to do is to listen to the Holy Spirit.
The knowledge is for you to recall. My job here is to help you to remember to yourself. The Anti-Christ is the one who tells you that he has something that you don’t have.

'The Ten Commandments' was originally 'The Ten Commitments'.

'Commandments' is something that comes from 'outside' you.

'Commitments' have to come from 'inside'.

[Note: I have put 'inside' and 'outside' in quotes because when we are fully enlightened there will be no 'inside' or 'outside'. All will be ONE.]

The Commandment: "Thou shall not commit adultery." was originally, "Thou shall not commit idolatory". The latter means, "thou shall not have anything other than God before me."

An idol is an image of your brother that you would have given value more than what he is.

When Islam started, it took away all idols. Unfortunately it is now replaced by an onion dome symbol on its roof. I have seen pitched roof rural mosque in Malaysia with a tiny symbolic onion dome on top. So we still teach separation.

Similarly, when I was in school the priests defended that the statues in the church were saints, while he criticised the Buddhists for praying to wooden idols. Since then, I stopped attending church..Let not their forms deceive you. Idols are but a substitute for your reality, because you lack confidence in who you are. You are Love itself. Love will seek itself. If you are perceived as love then the world will come to you. Your devil is your fear - your Ego.

Let me give you an example for what an idol is. For instance, I have bought a new Mercedes C class car and my wife took the car and got into an accident. When I know it, the first thing I asked was, "How's the car?" Immediately, I had given the car more value and power than it actually is. I had made it into an idol.


Question: How about Feng Shui?

Reply: Don't pay attention to it.

I used to have a company that was making money. Then someone said that I should consult a Feng Shui master. So I did. He came in and relocated all our desks in the office and I had to have a desk that is like a crescent moon...etc. In three months' time, my company went bust. My staff all became uncomfortable with the new desk positions because they prefered the original space that they had chosen for themselves.


There was a restaurant in Malacca which had a little statue of Dato Kong on an altar and the owner of the restaurant prayed to it regularly and offered it flowers and joss sticks. However, that didn't help and after some time, the restaurant closed down.

Then one day when I passed by, I noticed that it is now a Korean restaurant which seems to be doing well. Its owner stands outside to greet and smile at everyone. What is more surprising was that the little Dato Kong statue was not worshipped at all and instead was laid near a drain in front. That didn't do any harm to the new restaurant. Instead it prospered. So, it has nothing to do with what is outside of yourself. No matter where you go, just put Love first.

Love means affection to make that person feels important. If you have a Goddess in your Life, wouldn't this all you want to do? What happened to our patience, kindness and sweet words?

I have a house that is in the corner of a street, sandwiched between two other houses. My sister saw the house and said that it has bad Feng Shui because the driveway in is very narrow and it is difficult for money to go in. I wonder why she thought that way. Why didn't she think that the situation is such that when money goes in, it is difficult to come out? Isn't this just as logical?

Question: How about mantras?

Reply: A mantra is nothing more than a repetition of a certain phrases, unless you have a preconceived thought. Thoughts always come before form. Thoughts cannot be suppressed. Thought can be replaced by another thought. Therefore, it may also be an activity to bring your thoughts away from your cluttered thinking. Other than that, it would be just another activity that wouldn't help you. No amount of Holy verses can help you if you don’t have Love.

Question: I don't know the meaning of the Sanskrit mantras I recite, but they sound so beautifully soothing to me and they help me to be peaceful. How is this so?

Reply: If you feel something about it though you do not understand the meaning, then you must have understood it before in your previous embodiment.


I am going to talk a bit more about ED - Erectile Dysfunction now because some of you were asking me about it during the tea break.

As regards to sex, men often do not want to tell the truth. In a way, women too. This is so because there are a lot of judgment and taboo because religions or cultures say so. Men don't share their sexual fantasies with their spouse as they are afraid that she will judge him. Men are afraid of telling their spouse many things because women are sensitive and will turn defensive. When a person is defensive, he will either 'fight' or 'flight'.

There are men who has ED at home, but when they are on paid sex, there is no ED. That is because, for paid sex, he has no fear of rejection or failure.

There was a case where this man loves oral sex, but the wife refuses to do it. For twenty years, she had refused to do it. So they got divorced. Many people were surprised because they appear well in public and he left a beautiful woman for someone more plain. You see, what happens in the bedroom we don't know and what we see in public may not be indicative of how well a marriage goes.

In another case, a man wanted his wife to shave. Shave 'there' lah, where else? *Chuckles* But the wife refuses to shave. So he has problems with sex. When this man was a baby, he was cuddled by his grandfather and got very irritated by his spikey facial hair. So he grew up detesting body hair. In other words, he has anchored body hair with the unpleasant feeling with the grandfather.

Also, I would also not encourage men to be in the delivery room with the wife. There is a 50% chance that the man will be affected sexually as he now relates to her genitals differently.

The body always follow the thought. Sex is a mental thought. You anchor an emotion to a thought.

Haha! What kind of a Course in Miracles is this, talking about ED and sex? *chuckles*


An apology is a care taker way of wanting to maintain peace. Are you at peace when you say you are sorry? If the other person say I won’t forgive you then that is not your issue anymore.
To apologise do the following

1. Verbalise the apology

2. Explain why you are sorry.

3. Commit not to do it again.

For a divine person, apologies are not needed cos they have got no concept that they can be offended. So don’t take things personally. People do things according to their own consciousnes.

Question: How do we differentiate between the 'holy spirit' vs 'hearing voices' (as in being a schizophrenic)?

Reply: The Holy Spirit is calm, gentle, peaceful and does not judge. It does not carry a conversation with you. "Voices" come from fear. If in doubt, listen to the voice that is still. Just like the master chef, he knows how much oil, salt, sauces and other ingredients to put in at the correct time, correct heat and duration to produce what he wants. The knowingness and him are one. He just follow his inner-voice.

Question: But what if you are at the cross-roads in your life?

Reply: Highly spiritual people has not cross-roads. They just listen to the Holy Spirit and go with the flow.

Question: How would one learn to trust and go with the flow?

Reply: Just remember that "I am Love".

It is like the leaves that fall from the tree onto the river. It will eventually flow to the sea, but the tree does not know anything about it when it sheds its leaves. The leaves won't know either. The leaves doesn't struggle against going to the sea. It goes with the flow.

One of you has a baby who is 18 months old. Already you are worrying about how you are going to get him to universities and so on. You don't have to. Just ask and be ready to receive. The 'how' you don't have to know.

All the talk about 'sacrifice' for the children are all 'ego stuff'.

Technology will bring you many things that are not possible or affordable today, 20 years from now. You don't have to worry if your child will go to universities or not. 20 years from now, universities will be so different. There may not even be a need for universities in the current form.

Question: What do you think of the current disasters that happened recently? (Sichuan earthquake and Typhoon Nargis in Myanmar.)

Reply: It has nothing to do with us (people). If there are no human beings around they will still happen.

[End of Day 1]

Day 2.

Today is Father's Day. A happy Father's day to those of you who are fathers. I saw a bumper that say it is easy to be a father, a biological function, but it is not easy to be dad. It is easy to be a father. Almost anyone can be. To be a 'daddy' to your child is something else. Likewise, to be a mother is something easier than to be a 'mum'. Perhaps there should be a "Father's Day" and a "Dad's day".

Today is the last day of our ACIM course here. So since you all have read the book, you can zip it up and throw it into the river. *Chuckles* (As many of us have only read some pages in the book.)

It is also Maggie's (one of the participants) first day in the course. Sometimes the last in, ends up to be the first. Anyway, the ACIM course is like a buffet, you can never finish what you are eating. Also, a person's choices change. Just like your day, you choose what you want, whether you want chaos or peace. Life is like that. You can keep on eating a different thing.

You can be a creator of your day. We all went down with an empty plate. Whatever go into your body is what you choose.

Recently, I got an sms from a lady in Malaysia. In it, she spoke about her want to find a boyfriend and it seems futile.

It is wonderful to have a man (for her), but it is no big deal. After sometime, the man seems guaranteed to leave her.

There is a difference between 'want' and 'need'. 'Want' is optional. 'Need' is when you feel you don’t have something and that your Life is lacking. It comes from fear. In neediness, there tend to be 'control'.

Nobody likes to be controlled. Also, no woman is a rare commodity. If a woman wants a man to stay, she has to help him to have reasons for him to stay.

It is wonderful to be in the company of a man/wife and it is important not to take each other for granted.

Then I got another sms from this same lady. She says that she acknowledge that she will not get the kind of man that she is not (of the same consciousness). She also asked if some people are destined not to have a man. You see, only minds can be joined, bodies can't. After sometime 'getting' a man, she told me that she can't stand him any more and it's over.

Is there such thing as 'destiny'?

Are you destined? Let's say, it's about money. Are you destined to have money (or not have money)?

There is no destiny except for the one you created for yourself. We sow seeds unconsciously or semi-consciously. Let's say, many embodiments ago, I didn't like school, but I was very good with my hands. But I decided this time, I would be a scholar. Am I destined not to be a scholar? No! But, I can still be a scholar.

What you put in, you can also take out. Go for your highest good, your loving self. You can manifest whatever you are. If whatever you put is not serving you, take it out.

Question: Yesterday, you spoke that it is not worth going to war to fight over boundaries and a nation's way of life...etc. But what about what was mentioned in the Bhavagad Gita? About Arjuna going to war to even fight his relatives?

Reply: That is different. That epic is to illustrate that Arjuna got to do what he had to do given those circumstances and situations. You may like to read that in one of my blog posts, A Little Indian Philosophy

There is little point fighting over boundaries, as they change so many times in history. Is it worth dying for? Even the way of life of a country cannot be defended. For instance, Singapore in the 50s was very different from the way of life now. In a few years' time, there will be a casino that will change the way of life here. The population make-up will change. Twenty years from now, there will be yet another way of life in Singapore. So, how can it be defended?

The Malays often cite the importance of keeping Bangsa, Bahasa and Ugama (nation, language and religion).

Bangsa: If you examine the origins of the Malay people, they are already a mix from the Indonesian archipelago.

Bahasa: The Malay language has also changed tremendously since I was a kid. Departure from tradition is called 'adat' in Malay. It is said that they would rather kill their children than committing 'adat'.

Ugama: Way before long ago, the inhabitants in the Malay Peninsula already had a concept of 'tuhan', which translates as 'god'. Then Hinduism came and they became Hindus, then later they became Buddhists, then when Islam came, they become Muslims. Even the practice of Islam is now so different from what it was twenty years ago.

As long as we are attached to some illusion, we will be born into the same place. But by the time you are reincarnated here, the world would have changed and it will be difficult if you still have attachments to how it was before. So being reborned in the same place could be a suffering.

It is said that the heavier the fruit, the nearer it falls from the tree. Wherelse if the fruit is very light, like the Angsana tree, it will be carried by the wind to be germinated elsewhere.

For instance, if I want to be with my wife and children so much, I may be reincarnated into the family again. This time, I could be borned as my wife's grandchildren. See how I can create a pain for myself with my illusion?

But since we know that it is all an illusion, we might as well enjoy ourselves in it. Be in the world, but not of the world.

You will notice that those who are free from attachments are very loving.

Question: Does being 'detached' works for relationships? For instance, you could have a 'controlling boyfriend'.

Reply: Whatever does not work for you, put it back into the Universe. Let somebody else have that boyfriend. It may be suitable for them, but not for you. There will be some insecure people who wants to be controlled. Your job is not to take care of others.

Question: How about counselling?

Reply: Only when they asked.

Question: I have a problem with counselling some people, especially with some guys as after sometime they get too close.

Reply: That is because you need it. Somewhere there is something in you that needs that and subconsciously asking for it. But there is nothing wrong with having a relationship as a result of the closeness.

Take it as an opera. Before your role is played, you are in the backstage doing your makeup and putting on your dress ready to go out to the front stage for your part.

Question: Can you make mistakes in the front stage?

Reply: Yes, it is called stage fright.

Question: I mean, is it possible that I may have taken a role that I don't want?

Reply: Yes, then change your role. For instance, your role was not supposed to be the Emperor and you got it by chance when the lead actor for the Emperor did not turn up. But sometimes, changing the role may not help, as it is about changing ourselves. A bad driver will remain a bad driver even after he has changed to a better car.


There are seminars that are supposed to teach about love, but because the teachers do it for a livelihood, they keep you there (where you started), for fear that you will come back to do more courses otherwise. Even in Buddhism, they are supposed to tell you "You are a Buddha, but you don't remember you are one."

Question: How is it that we have forgotten that we are Pure Love?

Reply: That is because of a tiny mad idea. A mad idea like:

I am Aaron Lim.

I am Chinese.

I must have children.

Gautama is the only Buddha.

Mohammed is the last Prophet...etc.

Question: Are there different levels of enlightenment?

Reply: No. There is either Love or Fear. There is no degree of miracles. There is no big miracle or small miracles. Just miracles. All expressions of Love is maximal.

Question: In the book, it mentions: Today I make no decision for myself. It is the power greater than yourself that is doing that.

I have a trust in the Power greater than my higher self. I release my ego. I just flow with the flow. I won’t know that it will came out right.

If I’m making decision by myself, I will be forcing it. I will be based on fear.

I turn my Life to the power greater than myself. That power is still "I am". We are used to thinking of ourselves as our body. I think that that is me. I delusionally believe that the body is me. I won’t have this form anymore. Whenever you are in doubt, follow the voice that is still. Still thoughts are from the heart. You can’t see things clearly unless you are still.

The voice of the Holy Spirit is still. It does not debate with yourself. It does not, for instance, tell you which man you should marry.

You don't have to ask anyone which man you ought to marry, for you already know. The fact that you are already asking, means that you already have a doubt. For instance, you come to me and ask, "There are two men whom I am considering, one is rich, the other is poor, I like them both equally. Which one should I marry?". I would say, if you really like them 'equally' then marry the rich one. *Laughters* Otherwise, it wouldn't matter. If you really love the poor one, you will still marry him, as you would know it silently inside.

Do you know the famous Van Bild story?

Van Bild was dead poor, but when his wife-to-be then met him, she decided to marry him. On their wedding anniversary, he bought her 12 peanuts and told her he wished those were diamonds. Then he became fabulously rich and bought her 12 diamonds on their anniversary some years later, and she said that she wished they were peanuts. So it didn't matter for the wife.

Mother Teresa was a school teacher on the way to Darjeeling in a train when she heard a voice asking her to help the poor. When she got back to the school, she quit as a teacher, and picked up the first poor person she saw. She was alone in Calcutta, with no premises, no money, nobody else helping. But see what she eventually achieved! She listened to the Holy Spirit and followed what she heard.

Question: What if you ignored your 'voice'?

Reply: Nothing will happen. For instance, for the case of Mother Teresa, she'll miss the calling in this embodiment.

How many of you have met Mavis? Is Mavis there at the back of the class? Not there yet? Ok, I think she will be here later in the afternoon. Mavis is the founder of Touch-A-Life, a charity organisation that feeds the poor. She started her services by herself picking up bread from the bakeries and eggs from the neighbouring farms. She didn't know exactly why she was doing it, but she listened to herself and did it.

Then, one day she read about a Mr Narian who feeds the poor in Surabaya, Indonesia. A voice told her to visit him and she went. On seeing what he is doing, she cried, and she stayed on to help him. However, she also knew that she was not meant to stay forever and there came a time she knew she had to leave. This time, a 'voice' told her to go to Yogjarkata. Why? She didn't know. But off she went there.

When she was there, there was an earthquake. She didn't have a kitchen or helpers, so she bought nasi lemak and gave them to the quake victims. Then as she helped, she met locals who were willing to help by offering transport, then others offered their kitchens to cook food,...etc. Then other locals came forward to help and organised help was formed. At that point, she knew that she had done her part and it was time for her to return to Malacca.

I met her then in Malacca and she was telling me about her wanting to have a centre for Touch-A-Life. I happened to have a house which had been vacant for sometime and suggested that she can use it. I originally bought the house for my sister to live in, but instead she decided to remain in Canada, so the house was not lived in. See, though I intended the house for my sister, it has ended as the centre for Touch-A-Life, you don't know what the Holy Spirit has in store for you.

You don't have to do charity to be with the Holy Spirit. Follow your voice according to our karma. Each of us has a role to play. Our role could be in the office - helping people we meet in the office. We are not joyful if we don't follow the Holy Spirit.


We can see 'karma at work' at the Kuan Yin Temple areas. When I was there this morning, many people there were trying to sell me something. No one asked "how are you?" All they asked was, "What do you want?" "I think this is good for you...". These greetings are the same as "please give me your money". They are all selling religious artifacts, but they have all forgotten to put love first. They can't see the Buddha in the persons they meet.

My personal note: I greeted the 'auntie', "How are you?" at the foodcourt the other day and she replied coldly, "Do I know you?" Of which, I answered, "No you don't know me, but I can still ask how you are", causing chuckles among her colleagues and embarrassment to herself.

Someone in the audience: What Michael had said reminded me of my experience in America, when I was first there for the first few days. I was in a hurry to go to the post office to send something and was wanting to do that as quickly as possible. Then around the post box, there was a postman that had a beard and looked like Santa Claus - he just turned to me, looked into my eyes with a beaming smile and said out loud, "HOW ARE YOU DARLING?" I must admit that my immediate reaction in my mind was, "Do I know you?" But what followed up in my mind was a realisation that he was such a loving voice and people around the place was so loving. Then subsequently, almost all the Americans that I met in the US are all such warm and loving people, which really made a huge difference to my life there.

It is great to know that you have such a wonderful experience in America. Funny enough, this differs from some of the comments I get from some people about their experiences there. This is a case of the subject changing the object by their thoughts and observations. We are living in a holographic Universe.

The object will change according your perception of it. There is no reality in this world. That reality is what you see. If you see your child as a thrash, then you see thrash. If you see them as Divine and you talk to them Divinely, then they are Divine.

There will always be more people disagreeing with you than agreeing with you because they may not share the same thinking, background or experience. That shouldn't affect you. If you think otherwise, then you will have pain. Remind yourself that they are not what I’m seeing. This is your daily work. Don’t let an event in life stop you from being your true self. Equanimity is when you would react the same whether it is praise or blame.

Page 612, Para 5: How holy are you, that the Son of God can be your savior in the midst of dreams of desolution and disaster. See how eagerly he comes, and steps aside from heavy shadows that have hidden him, and shines on you in gratitude and love. He is himself, but not himself alone. And as his Father lost not part of him in your creation, so the light in him is brighter still because you gave your light to him, to save him from the dark...

In the midst of disaster, can you still be peaceful? You can be centred only if you can have love and gratitude with you. Always look for gratitude and you will then see doors opened for you. Love is the only thing in the Universe that increases by giving it away. Transfer love to others. They will never forget you. Everytime you feed people, you get fed.

You are the Sun of God (the Light). Thank you for showing me that I have a place for my heart in here. There are the Rich and the destitute people. They each have their role. It would be hard for a Mother Teresa to arise from Hollywood. There, everyone is rich.

We live in an upside down world. The people helped are there to help me to become who I am. The danger comes from the lack of such understanding. Turn the whole world upside down and you can see completely different world.

Because I feel good about her, every touch is healing. Pure love will always go where love is. The Sun lost nothing by giving us the Light.

It is difficult for man to show love in an affectional way, like hugging people we meet, but at least smile, say "Good morning".

Know your 'weakest link'. Generally, what is a weakest link?

For instance, phospherous is for the roots and potassium is for the fruits and flowers. Nitrogen is for the leaves. If there is not enough nitrogen, then it is no point having the phospherous and the potassium. Here, the weakest link is nitrogen.

My personal note: Another example is in information security. Information goes through a life-cycle and a network of people, computers, cables, repositories...etc. As human beings is the weakest link, it is often futile to strengthen the other aspects of the network, without strengthening the weakest link first (which is the humans).

So, what is your weakest link? Is it that you are too nosey? Could it be that you don't think before you speak? What else? Temper? Lack of focus? Procrastination? Impatience?

Impatience will burn away all your blessings. Patient people will trust the process that everything will come at a right time. There is a cause to all these.

Could your weakest link be that you always give power to other people? (That could include blaming others...etc)

Many things you are experiencing can be due to self-sabotage. For instance, there is someone I know who dare not become successful. If he becomes successful then he must drink then he sabotage it.

Your weak link could be something related to the past.

Question: How do we know our 'weakest links'?

Reply: Journal your thoughts.

My comment: Journal your dreams. You write them down as it is without judgment. You may or may not understand what they all mean, as much of the time, they are symbolic. However, when you read your journal, you will gradually understand most of it and also observe a certain trend in your thought.

There is also the non-dominant hand journaling that will reveal your sub-conscious thoughts better.

Question: Why don't KuanYin help by answering some of our questions?

Reply: Because she is above your problems and doesn't want to judge.

But sometimes, she do answer some questions. For instance, my father had an opportunity to buy a quarry. He asked Kuan Yin and she replied in the negative, because he will fail and experienced 10 years of unemployment. But did my father listened? He didn't. He went ahead to acquire the quarry because it sounded like a winner. At that time, Malaysia was going through massive infrastructure developments. Houses and roads have to be built that will require a lot of granite. So how can it not work?

It didn't work because to mine the granite, you need dynamite. To get dynamite, you have to bribe the authorities. Without bribe, he couldn't have that dynamite to get the granite and the business collapsed. After that, truly he couldn't find work for ten years.

So you see, even if you asked and Kuan Yin answered, how did that helped my father? It still all amounts to believing in yourself.

Ok, I will tell you another story about fortune tellers then you decide for yourself whether you should use them. It is from an old Chinese movie called, "The dragon does not live here anymore".

This movie is about a wealthy man who went to a fortune teller in the market, who looked at his palms and told him that his life will not be very long. The fortune teller even told him of the exact date and time that he will die. He was dejected, but accepted the 'fate'.

One day when he was walking in a park, he saw a man trying to hang himself and quickly intervened. The suicidal man was very sad and told him that life is bad and he had decided to end it. "What could be so bad?" the rich man asked. The suicidal man related his problems to him and said that it is better to end his life. Then on closer examination, the rich man realised that it was only about money. So he gave the man money and told him not to kill himself, which he was grateful and gave up committing suicide.

A few days later, the rich man met someone else who was very sad with his problems. Again, the centre of the problem was the need for money. Since the rich man knew he was dying, he thought, it would be better to give the man money.

As the days passed, the rich man met several others with money problems and he similarly helped them by giving them money.

So the day of the rich man's dying day came. He had already bought himself a coffin and a few minutes before the time to 'go', he climbed into the coffin and laid there. Then he gently closed his eyes to prepare for his death. With his eyes closed, he waited. And waited. After more than just a few minutes, he looked at the time and realised he has passed his purported time to die, but he was still not dying. He then got up and went to find the fortune teller.

When he reached the fortune teller, he was angry and asked him why he had not died as he predicted. The fortune teller was astonished and said that it was not possible as he was never wrong. He then asked the rich man for his palm for verification. When he saw his palm he said that this was not the palm that he had read. He said that the life line in the rich man's palm has changed. Then he asked the rich man if he had done something recently that had changed his life. The rich man replied, "Yes. I gave all my money away to help some people I have met".

"Oh! That is why," said the fortune teller, "that is why you have prolonged your life! Good!"

"But what is the point of having a longer life now, as I don't have money?!" the rich (now poor) man retorted.

[End of movie]

Fortune tellers can only tell you your past. Your future is up to you.

Guard your energy if you are in your physical body. This is especially so if you are a more spiritually attuned person.

Question: Why is it more so if you are 'spiritually attuned'?

Reply: That is because you will be more sensitive to energies than the average person. For the less spiritually attuned, their energies are more encrusted.

So watch yourself, if you meet someone or you are in somewhere that is not spiritually uplifting walk out immediately. Your soul knows it. [This does not apply to highly enlightened people like a Buddha. A Buddha lights up everywhere they go to.]

Question: Why do we need to be mindful?

Reply: You don't have to, but if you are not it is painful and many people will not welcome you.

For instance, when you use the toilet, leave it as it is when you found it. So much so that nobody would even know you have used it. Check if the toilet seat is placed up or down. If it is down, leave it down. If it is up, leave it up.

When I first got married, I used to leave the toilet seat up. That's what most men do. Then my wife asked me to be mindful and leave the toilet seat down after use. Then, after a few moments, she came back to me and said that if she had asked me to be mindful to leave the toilet seat down, then equally, I could have asked her to leave the toilet seat up. So, she was being mindful about her own mindfulness.

Be mindful. Be nothing but joy to others. When we use things, put them back in the original condition and position. If you are so mindful, the owner of the place will not even notice you have been around.

My comment: Actually in this case about toilet seat positions, it shouldn't matter whether it is up or down and in either position, it is a 50% probability that the next user would find it convenient. :)

There was an actress who divorced her husband because of disagreements over how they use the toilets.

Someone from the floor yelled: Get another toilet!

Reply: Eh, toilet you only use one, husband you can also find another one. Don't delude yourself thinking that you are such a rare commodity too! *laughter*

In real estate, it is about "Location, location, location". In spirituality, it is about, "Practice, practice, practice". Practice until it become a natural part of you. Silently comes the Buddha (a book).

The more Mindful you are, the more wonderful your life will be, unless you love chaos.

Your heart is the center where love is. Remember the story of the two wolves? There are two wolves—one good, one bad—which one will win when they fight? Answer: The one you feed most.

Question: Is there such thing as salvation?

Reply: Yes, but the person that can save you is yourself. No one else. By the way, for those who were not here in the first lessons, 'salvation' means 'self elevation'.

We are living in the phenomenal world. That means, if you don’t like that world you live in, you can change the world in that instant itself.

I have been around this area many times for this last one year, since we have ACIM here. Everytime, I would like to go to the Kuan Yin temple and watch the world go round. There I saw this man with two beautifulk daughters. They looked lovely and were selling tissue papers to the public. I wanted to approach him and talk to him, but somehow I hear the Holy Spirit say, "No". Then on the following trip here, I wanted to do the same, and again I heard the Holy Spirit say, "No". Now on this trip, this is the third time, I again hear, "No". So for some reason, the Holy Spirit does not think that I should speak to that man. I don't know why, but when the Holy Spirit speaks, I obey.

There could be a variety of reasons why I shouldn't be talking to him or help him. Perhaps it is a lesson he has to overcome himself. Perhaps, I shouldn't be the one talking to him. Someone else would be the one. So I don't know.

But if one of you saw me ignoring a poor man that needs help, you may think, what kind of Dharma teacher am I. So you see, form can be misleading in spiritual practice.

The whole course in ACIM is about Forgiveness. Basically, it is to forgive yourself. If you can’t forgive, it means that someone has offended you. As you are not in permanent state and not real, so who got offended? Your forgiveness is about changing your mind. You go back to the level of your mind that had caused the offense. If you don’t love yourself. How can you love others? You can only give what you have.

So you need to forgive yourself. Unforgiveness is like drinking poison and hoping that the others will die.

Go with your feeling. Do it as soon as possible, because you may not have a 'tomorrow'. You must first love yourself. Out of that principle, you should forgive because of the delusion of holding on to something. Make the list of people you can’t forgive. A face-to-face reconciliation is the most powerful.

You are pure love. Pure love must shine. Put love first wherever you go. Put love first into your business. You own no one. If someone got to go (leave you), bless them. It is okay and wish them well.

Are you living your life from the perspective of Love or Fear. If you fully remember that you are pure love then you are coming to this Earth by choice not Karma.

Whenever you are faced with a choice always choose peace. Defensiveness will drop. A defense is an attack. The more people Love you, the more money you have.

Watch your emotion that is attaching to you. Why does this person still stick to you? Where in my Life am I picky about something? If you are not in alignment with yourself then you are not peaceful. You can’t give what you don’t have. But you still can be loving.

A Story

There is a story of a Christian priest who believes that only Christians go to Heaven. So when he died, indeed he went up to Heaven. Outside the Pearly Gates, he checked his name in the register and was delighted that his name was there. Then, he checked if Buddha, Lao Tze and other famous people who were not Christians to see if their names were there. True enough! Their names were not there. "They must be in Hell," he thought.

Not satisfied, he decided to take the lift down to Hell to check if those eminent figures were there. So, down he went into Hell using the lift. When the lift door opened, there was a sign saying, "Welcome to Hell", then there were flowers, trees and music. It was beautiful and people were polite.

Anyway, he went to the Hell gate keeper and asked to see the register. True enough, he found the names of Buddha, Lao Tze and other eminent people there. He was satisfied that he was right that non-Christians go to Hell. So, he turned back wanting to take the lift back to Heaven. Then, he thought, "How is it that Hell is so beautiful? It is so unlike the impression he always had, of devilish characters burning in fire and everyone there being nasty."

So he turned around and asked the Gate Keeper why Hell is so beautiful and not 'hellish'. The Gate Keeper heard the priest out and replied, "Oh ya, it was exactly like the impression you used to have until Buddha, Lao Tze and all the other eminent ones came here".


Saturday, June 14, 2008

Bucky Group 28 - Silence

14th June 2008 - "A Way to God - Silence" by Anthony De Mello, Video Viewing.
Whichever way you would seek about the Truth, at some point it will require 'silence'. Some people achieve silence through meditation. Silence is beyond thinking.
There is a story of a king who went to the priest to seek the Truth. The king said that he was a busy man and would need it expressed in one sentence. The priest said he could do better and say it in one word, and the word is "silence".
"How can I achieve silence?" the king asked.
"Through meditation," the priest replied.
"How can I meditate?" the king continued.
"Through silence," the priest replied again.
"How can I achieve this silence?" the king asked again.
"Through meditation,"the priest replied again.
So this cyclical question and answer went on and on.
There is a story of a disciple who asked his master if he had taught him everything or kept some secret away from him. The master then took the disciple for a walk along the mountain ridges. During the walk, the master pointed out to a bird singing on a tree to the disciple. The disciple listened to the bird singing and then realised then he already know the secret. He knows it by observing God's creation.
There is a man who was admiring the beauty of sunset and pointed it out to another man. The second man couldn't see the beauty. This surprised the first man, and then realised that beauty is not a thing but is a way of thinking and observation. Unless we understand the way of thinking and observation, we are not going to be able to see the beauty of God's creation.
It is difficult to tell a blind man what the colour green is. Let's supposed if I tell him that the colour green is like soft flowing music. Then one day if he become sighted, he will think soft flowing music is 'green' and will completely overlook something which we called the colour 'green'.
Same as a fish in the ocean who would be looking for the ocean as he had been told certain description of what an ocean looks like. He will be searching everywhere and be unable to find it, not knowing that it is right in front and around him.
You see, if we have been told and image of God, we will be looking for what we think God is like, missing altogether what God really is, even if He is before us. We learn to understand God by observing his creations. It is from the song and the dance that we understand the singer and the dancer.

[more later...]

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Bucky Group 27 - Love

7th June 2008 - "A Way to God - Love" by Anthony di Mello, video viewing session
There was an 8 year boy who had committed murder, armed robbery and other violent crimes at that young age and could not be brought to court nor brought to the reformative centres. So the police brought him to Father Flanagan, the founder of Boys' Town.
While in the train on the way to Father Flanagan, the boy (who revealed that in his book years later) that knowing that he was going to a priest, he resolved that he would kill anyone who would say "...I love you...", to him. And in all probabilities he would do it, as this is coming from a boy who was a killer.
When Father Flanagan met him, he looked at him, asked him his name and briefed him that there will be someone bringing him around to look at the place and eventually he would have a job there. So he asked him to go and choose something he wanted to do, but to take his time as there was no hurry. Those brief few minutes changed the boy's life.
The boy wrote in his book that when he looked into Father Flanagan's eyes, he immediately felt love, though Father didn't said the word. You see, love is immediately transmitted to others even though we do not say it. Our thoughts tranfer.
[I wonder why this doesn't work with girl friends or wives! Why do women need to have love explicitly expressed? hmm... food for thought.]
To Father Flanagan, there is no such thing as a 'bad boy'. Sure he saw what crimes the boy had committed, but he separated the sin from the sinner.
In an experiment carried out by some psychologists, they brought some ordinary kids to a school and told the teachers that these kids are of high IQ and are categorised as "Spurters" (though there was no such categorisation in psychology). After a few months, a follow-up IQ test was conducted and all the kids in the group gained 12 to 36 points in their IQ.
Our thoughts can transform people. This was even found to work with laboratory mice. Even the mice performed better in the experiments.
1. Think of someone you love and feel how it is.
2. Think of someone you do not like at all, and see if you can see some good of that person.
3. Think of what you will think of that person with Jesus next to you.
4. Think of what names Jesus will call you when he meets you.

SC has a friend who doesn't trust anyone. No one at all, and all of them have proven to be untrustworthy in the end. Personally, I wouldn't trust someone who doesn't trust anyone else. Someone like this is not honest himself/herself.
So how do we trust people. There are many of us in the room who has at some point trusted somebody only to be let down. I think the fallacy most people have is that being trusting meant that we become 'blind' to what is happening. I trust people, but am not blind.
"But is that judgment?" someone asked.
Observing and accepting observations as they are, are not judgments. Judgments only come when we start hating that person.
I have a friend, whom I think is a very loving man. He never despise anyone. He never talk ill about people or situations. However, he is also blind to many 'odd' situations around him. He would even dream up excuses for people who harmed him. In the end he become a bankrupt. How does that serve him by being 'loving' and blind? I put 'loving' in quotes, because I am thinking if he actually love himself. To understand love, we have first to love ourselves. That means to go into situations with our eyes open and protect ourselves. It doesn't mean to be untrusting, but to be truthful to what is happening before our eyes.
Rachel said we tend to look at the 'bad' sides of a person when they are alive and only speak good of them in their funeral!
Joo Hwa's Timeout:
There is a pig and a cow in a farm. Everyone loves the cow and not the pig. The pig couldn't understand that as they would eat almost every part of his body. The cow on the other hand only provides milk and she is not even slaughtered. The pig then confronted the cow with the question, which the cow replied, "I serve everyone when I am alive. You only serve others when you are dead!" *laughters*
Joo Hock related a story about a new comer at the gates of the city who asked an old wise man how the people in the city are like. The wise man then asked what type of people lives in the city he comes from and the new comer said, "Oh! Horrible people. They are unkind and unloving...". Then the wise man said, "Yes, in this city you will meet the same type of people." The newcomer went to live in the city and then meet horrible, unkind and unloving people.
A few days later, another newcomer came to ask the wise man the same question and he asked the newcomer the same question, "What type of people lives in the city where you come from?" The newcomer replied, "Fantastic people. Kind and loving." Then the newcomer went to live in the city and meet fantastic, kind and loving people.
The moral of the story is that, as we do not see the positive aspects of people, we will end up attracting the very kind of people that are lingering in our thoughts.
Joo Hock added that, actually there is no 'good' and 'bad'. They are both part of the whole. The universe does not discriminate against 'good' and 'bad'. Just like the Ying and Yang sign. There is the black and white. In the black, there is a dot of white. In the white, there is the dot of black.
At this point, I realised that Father Anthony uses 'good' and 'bad' quite often. Perhaps this is due to his Catholic background. I also noticed that of people of other religions. Buddhist monks do the same, they preach what is 'good' and what is 'bad'....

Bucky Group 26 - Geometry

Joo Hock constructed these structures out of toothpicks and plasticines.

A straight line, being able to denote only 1-dimension;

A triangle, ditto 2-dimensions;

A cube, ditto 3-dimensions; and

A tetrahedron, capable of representing 4-dimensions.

I found this video, relating the geometry of tetrahedron-tensigrity-isocahedron. Notice how the (invisible) forces of a tensigrity structure triangulates to a iscocahedron?

Other than discussing about tetrahedrons and isocahedrons, Monica shared with us something she learned from the website of Anthony di Mello.

It goes like this:

  • Sit somewhere comfortable, relax and close your eyes.
  • Think of something in your environment that makes you feel happy.
  • Enjoy this feeling.
  • Remember how this feeling is.
  • When you have remembered this feeling, you can replay this feeling wherever you are and when you want.

Breakfast at the Rainforest Cafe by Bukit Timah.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

...till death do us part.

My father lived a full life. He died peacefully in his sleep at the age of 89, a few years ago. A few moments before he passed away, he reached out to hold my mother's hand, but my mother shook it away and chided him for disturbing her sleep in the wee hours of the morning. Now, my mother regrets that deeply and laments over his sudden departure.
My parents were happily married for over 50 years. In all my years with them, I saw them quarelled only once. So on the balance, they lived a happy marriage. It is therefore a pity that my mother did not respond to him during his last breath, his last touch to tell her he loves her and that he was leaving.
It is easy in life to be overly busy and then take our love ones for granted. When that happens, communications starts to break down.
One fine morning, I was with my friend and his family at a cafe in East Coast Park. The atmosphere seemed cordial until my friend asked his wife if she wanted coffee. "Since when did I have coffee for breakfast?!!" she replied angrily. Often arguments come from seemingly trivial matters like these. At this point, usually the man would turn logical and get very angry over his wife's pettiness, missing the real issues. As a bystander, it is easy to see that the real unhappiness is more subtle and more hidden, for it is definitely not about the 'coffee'.
In this era of the Internet and mobile phones, everyone is working around the clock. Work no longer stops after 5pm. Many also travel overseas frequently. It is getting harder and harder to be a husband and a father, and to be a wife and a mother.
However, between the genders, I think it is harder to be a 'modern woman'. A 'modern woman' now has to work like a man, think like a man and 'fight' like a man, and yet at the end of the day, would still like to go home to be 'sayang' (loved) by a man. But where is there the time to find this man, or to find the time (to be 'sayang')? Women libbers probably didn't figure this out before hand, did they?
Since the liberation of women and the woman's charter, career prospects are getting more and more equal for women. Women now can aspire for their career ambitions, amid the tedium of getting their family life together.
Given the chase of modern careers in unchaste environments, it is no surprise that divorces are up.
Divorces are emotionally devastating. After years of being together (or in neglect), building a home and a family, it all come to a sharp end. As the divorce proceedings moves forward, the pain gets more aggravated for the couple, while their lawyers get paid in delight.
Recently, my friend's wife decided to pack up and leave with their daughter (still a baby) in her arms. She has already found somewhere else to stay and is contesting for parental control of the baby and the majority of the house. Her lawyer has accused my friend of being a depressive and mentally unstable man with suicidal tendencies, and therefore not suited to have parental control over his daughter. (I certainly don't see any truth to that!) The way it goes, my friend will soon lose his house and have only limited access to his daughter. The last straw came when he found out that his wife already has another man for a while. Naturally, he was devastated!
Most of us would know of more than a few people around us who are divorced. The more we hear of divorces, the less encouraging it is to get married, particularly for men, who feels that they tend to lose more in a divorce.
If this trend persists, we will need a Men's Charter. Funny enough, this was mentioned during the coffee shop chat after the Bucky session on Saturday. Even counselling processes are mostly developed by women authors, with noble intentions no doubt, but skewed to how a woman thinks and her issues in marriages. I think it has come a time, the modern man needs to be better represented and protected.
The caricature of the man sleeping with his secretary and breaking the marriage now needs a careful revisit. This is the type of fears many women have of their husbands. A lady friend once asked me, "Which cat doesn't like fish?" This, referring to "Which man doesn't like women?" I think she is absolutely right. Absolutely right in her world, since she considers herself to be 'fish', all men would surely be 'cats'. I also know that there are men I know of who does not consider women to be 'fish'. So are they 'cats'? hehe.
I had asked a divorcee sometime ago on how she could possibly end her marriage with her ex-husband as he did not have any major vices, and that she had made her vow to God in the Catholic church to keep the marriage "in sickness or in health, till death do us part", and she simply replied, "...but that was a long time ago."
So are vows meant to be eternal? Or must they go according to the seasonally adjusted optimism? Or is it really possible for marriages to be alive and happy 'till death do us part'? Or are divorces a result of our silly rapid urban lifestyle with all the distractions and weariness? Or is it because it is only now that more people are taking steps to end their marriages which had been dead long ago?
However, when they started, there must be something that had attracted them to each other during courtship that had led to their marriages. Was it love? Or was it merely the hormones and sexual attraction and instinct to bear children and perpetuate the human species? Or was it the pleasures and fantasies of romantic love?
Somehow, it must have sounded like a good idea at one point in time for them to get married, as a union of two souls. They say only heads can join, bodies can't. So as the head (consciousness) develop at different speeds and take different directions, they can no longer 'join' and sustain their living together, since bodies cannot join. That's spells the end of the marriage. Is this nature's process of entropy? After all, nothing is permanent! Nothing except Love. So does Love go on?
At least love ought to be eternal, or is it? Is it possible to take a vow of love in the wedding ceremony and then grow to hate each other forever after that? :) Or does two persons who love each other necessarily need to stay married or live together, if it has already proven to be an unpleasant and impossible task? Isn't true love fully unconditional?
As my thoughts about the ravages of 'love' and 'marriage' rolled in my mind, I overheard an innocent conversation between a 19 year old girl and a boy who is 16 year old at the back of the bus where I was. He is still green and curious about going out on dates, whilst she is older and already in a relationship and advising her younger friend. As she shared with him how being in a relationship is about, I am fascinated with their vibrance, hope, purity and innocence. Isn't this where most of us started with the ideals of marriage and family some time ago? :)