Greetings from Sedona, Arizona! I’m here with a beautiful friend, Kevin Haddle, from Masterful Living  and we came to see Carolyn Myss teach about medical intuition. I feel so loved and supported by the beauty of the land here, and the energy is deeply nourishing for the inner work we’re doing.
One of the things that I’ve been thinking about for the past week is the patterns in the mind of punishment. We recently did the “5-Day Challenge to End Self-Sabotage” and most of us who engage in self-sabotage and self-medication have an awareness that there’s an aspect to it that feels like self-punishment. The ego thought system is has an ugly thread of punishment all the way through it. And even the most dedicated spiritual students aren’t aware of it.
For instance, do you look at the political or cultural scene and see folks who are acting out in ways that seem mercenary, egotistical, and unconscionable? And, when you think of them, do you think they should be punished? I notice that it seems almost like a knee-jerk reaction.
If we see someone doing something that we label as wrong or bad, then we actively want to see them be punished. Very often, the thought of supporting them to see the effects of their choices, to practice true forgiveness and to help them discover why their choices were hurtful or destructive in order to redeem them on a spiritual level – these things are not practiced much in our culture and society.
They also aren’t practiced much in our families.
For me, it’s been so helpful, and so life-changing and relationship-changing, to ELIMINATE the need to punish anyone who has behaved in an unkind or unloving way. Instead of getting angry and upset, and telling people how I don’t like what they’ve done and blaming them for how I feel, I’ve been practicing taking responsibility and extending compassion.
In making this shift, I’ve really had to retrain and relearn, but thanks to the Higher Holy Spirit Self, it’s been miraculous and easier than I could ever have imagined – of course, having a true willingness makes the difference.
I woke up this morning thinking about the Responsibility For Sight section in the A Course in Miracles Text, it begins like this, “This is the only thing that you need do for vision, happiness, release from pain and the complete escape from sin, all to be given you.”
I remember reading that for the first time and thinking, “WOW!! THANK YOU!”
It goes on to say, “Say only this, but mean it with no reservations, for here the power of salvation lies:” And that was another OMG, Here it comes! And then, here is what we are to say:
“I am responsible for what I see. I choose the feelings I experience, and I decide upon the goal I would achieve. And everything that seems to happen to me I ask for, and receive as I have asked. Deceive yourself no longer that you are helpless in the face of what is done to you. Acknowledge but that you have been mistaken, and all effects of your mistakes will disappear.” T-21.II.2.
My shorthand for this became:
I am responsible for what I see,
And everything is just as I wish it to be.
I’ve said that to myself thousands of times, and it’s helped me to snap out of the delusion of the illusion an into the power of loving choices. That’s no small thing.
If we’re not taking responsibility we’re probably in blame , and then we are the victim. The victim always believe in punishment. Some people who believe they are a victim are convinced, deep down, that they are being punished for their sins.
We can put an end to all this stinking thinking. That’s what my life and work is about, helping myself to unwrap these gnarly patterns as quickly and easily as possible by truly LIVING A Course in Miracles and then sharing what I’m learning to support others.
Many believe that the pains they experience in this world are the punishment for their sins. Sometimes I think the greatest sin that ever was is the idea that God was a being or a system that would punish us. I’ve come to see that all punishment is self-inflicted, even when it seems that it’s coming from outside.
I used to feel punished and as I eliminate the wish to punish anyone, the feeling of being punished has dissolved and resolved. I cannot wish to punish someone else and not feel punished myself, because there is only one of us here. There’s no way out of experiencing what we project. There just isn’t.
However, we can heal the habit of projection. And that’s such a good thing!
On Christmas Day last year, I did a radio show  on The Holy Instant & Special Relationships  that you may find helpful. Also, on my radio show, I turn my focus  to relationships for the whole month of February. I’ve been doing this for years and so I’ll be starting that on Tuesday. If this is a topic that particularly interests you, I encourage you to go and check out the A Course in Miracles Radio show archive . You can also get the two podcasts for all of the episodes. It’s all available for downloading, including transcripts. And now, we’re also posting the radio show episodes at YouTube for viewing with captioning at my YouTube channel . If you subscribe you’ll be notified when new videos are added.
Let me know what you’re interested in – please take my latest survey  – it’s only about 1 minute of your time or less!
Retreat with us! We’re offering a deeply healing, renewing and restoring retreat March 20 to 24. As always on my retreats we’ll have a lot of fun while we’re doing a lot of deep cleansing and clearing of old emotional and mental baggage. It’s such a relief to let it go! If you’d like to start your spring with real clarity and healing, come join us!
Spring Clearing Retreat March 20 to 24 – with Lisa Natoli, Corinne Zupko, Jon Mundy, myself and more! Plus, Jon Mundy and I are offering our How to Create & Lead A Workshop training which includes certification to lead my Forgive & Be Free Workshop! March 14 to 20. Register for both and receive an additional discount. Click now for details! 
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