Though this metaphysical study group has been in existence since 2011, like us, it is ever-evolving. With the passing yesterday of the foremost teacher of A Course in Miracles, the man I considered my most valuable mentor on this earth, we are reviving this group in honor of him, and fine-tuning the focus of the group in the way I have always been drawn to.
Kenneth Wapnick, Ph.D. is a living-link to the source of the writings, and widely considered the definitive expert on A Course in Miracles. Having been gifted the opportunity to study with him for a week, I whole-heartedly agree.
The Course says of Jesus' crucifixion, "Teach not that I died in vain. Teach rather that I did not die by demonstrating that I live in you." (T-11.VI.7:3-4) This reference was fittingly sent out with Ken's obituary as well.
ACIM teaches that our belief in our physical existences is due to our ego thought system, and all a part of the ego's decption, purposely to keep us believing in its illusion -- to keep us eternally "Mindless" - and masked from our memory that we are indeed able to chose what is real.
It is clear then that it is ego-driven to elevate any man -- any thing at all made in this illusion -- to an idol status. Nothing of this world has any value. ("I will not value what is valueless." Lesson 133) This study group therefore is not attempting to elevate Ken to such a status. Rather, it is recognizing him as the premier teacher of how to remove "the blocks to the awareness of love's presence" in this illusion. As such, Ken's teachings help me to remember better than anything else, Who I truly Am. It is for this reason that this group is changing focus from including discussion of Ken's teachings, to exclusively studying Ken's profound understanding of the text, which he himself edited.
ANYONE willing to study from Ken Wapnick's perspective is welcome to join us. This is not an easy, or popular thought system. For me however, it is the single-most helpful tool for personal growth and slashing through ego I have found -- though also the most personally challenging for anyone I have met - even long-term students of the Course.
Please be aware, ACIM has many very famous "teachers" who teach things that are not what is in the Course -- some of which are even in direct contradiction to its words and concepts. Ken points out over and over how incredibly many students of the Course "study" it thoroughly for years, quote it even, yet continue to completely miss its appropriate meaning, application, and experience in their lives. We have in the past had many people come to this group unwittingly bent on perpetuating the misconceptions designed to keep one stuck in this illusion. This group seeks to eradicate the misunderstandings and misperceptions that function to keep us mindless. This group is to help us "get it". Profoundly. Deeply. Experientially. Transformationally.
The Course is clear that we cannot remove our blocks to the awareness of love's presence, without first seeing the mistaken thought system (ego) driving us consciously, and ever-unconsciously. Only then can we purposefully, mindfully and meaningfully chose again.
This group then, is not for finding a safe, polite, comfortable study group; it is for standing at the edge of our comfort zone and looking honestly at ourselves -- finding and removing our blocks to the awareness of love's presence -- finding and removing our egoic thoughts at every opportunity, in order to get closer to having Christ's Vision, and knowing our true Self. As Ken says, coming each time to the Course with wholly-open hands, grasping no preconceived notions of what ACIM is, what God is, what Jesus is, who you are...
If this level of self-awareness speaks to you, you are welcome to join us.
If you prefer the more typical reading/interpretation group, this group is not a good fit. Please honor the intention of our group, and its members, by insuring this form of study is what you seek before joining us. That will allow our group to progress in the open, learning energy we seek through this communion.
If you are not familiar with Ken's teachings to know if his clarifications resonate with you, you can familiarize yourself with him via a lengthy selection of YouTube videos before deciding to visit this group.
You can find several local, general study groups through Unity churches, and at http://www.miraclecenter.org/services/study-groups.php
Love, Light and Peace to each of you,
I found a nice concise write-up about Ken that may help with understanding why his interpretation is so important to this group...:
Kenneth Wapnick taught and wrote about "A Course in Miracles" for more than 35 years. He was widely regarded as the world's foremost teacher of the Course, which he had said is the most important spiritual document for our age. He was an associate of Dr. Helen Schucman, scribe of the Course, and Dr. William Thetford, close friend, colleague, and collaborator in the scribing. He worked with Helen for over a year preparing the Course for publication. Drawing upon his close relationship with her that spanned the last eight years of her life, Kenneth wrote Helen's biography, "Absence from Felicity: The Story of Helen Schucman and Her Scribing of A Course in Miracles." Of this relationship he writes in his preface, "Helen and I shared a deep love for one another, and for Jesus in whose love we knew we were joined, and on behalf of whose Course we had come together."
Kenneth wrote more than 30 books and produced over 175 audio and video recordings of his classes and lectures, some works authored with his wife, Gloria. He held a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Adelphi University in New York, and during his years as a therapist integrated the Course's principles with his practice of psychotherapy. The Course's psychotheraputic framework had been the subject of his presentations at conferences of psychotherapists and of articles in professional journals.
In 1983, Kenneth and Gloria founded the Foundation for "A Course in" Miracles, located in Temecula, CA. The Foundation's principal purpose is to assist students of the Course through classes, discussion groups, and written, audio, video, and digital publications. In response to numerous requests, Kenneth and Gloria presented the Course's message and teachings to audiences around the world. Various radio and television stations, including PBS, as well as several internet sites have broadcast interviews of them.
The depth of Kenneth's understanding of the Course's thought system, his clarity and humor, and his constant demonstration of the Course's gentle message of forgiveness and oneness continue to attract large numbers of people to his writings and recordings. Website: www.facim.org.