8 Oct 1996
Re: Angel voices

Dear Trudy

>The "two-way communication" techniques for prayer seem to work most of the time. When it works well, I am frequently filled with a sense of God's love, and this presence I've told you about is very strong.

Good. I'm glad.

Yes, feelings can be misleading. They're only indications. So it's up to us to figure out what a feeling indicates and where it's coming from. And yes, we can influence our feelings by what we say to ourselves. That's because the subconscious mind is like the central processing unit of a computer: it takes inputs from many sources, and it uses stored programs and data. Does this mean our feelings are always indications of reality? No, because they may be internally generated. But does it mean our feelings are divorced from reality? No, they may be indicating something that exists whether we know it or not.

>Recently I was "nudged" into writing my sister a letter that said, "I was told to write you a letter and tell you that you are not alone. I know it's hard right now, but hang in there. I love you."

From the results, it probably would have been better to write, "You are not alone. I know it's hard right now, but hang in there. I love you." -- and let it go at that. The statement "I was told to write you a letter" invites the questions, "By whom?" and "How do you know?" so your sister's reactions were normal, expectable. Since you were not sure, it wasn't wise to make that statement. Therefore, if the nudge included the thought "Tell her you were told to write to her," it looks like the source of that nudge either wasn't wise or was making mischief between you and your sister. In either case, not from God, and not likely from you since it was a nudge. So probably from a mischievous spirit. This reminds me of one of the caveats in my paper on Two-Way Prayer -- It is seldom wise to say "This came from God" or "Thus sayeth the Lord." As you might expect, I learned that lesson the hard way.

>As to the St. Augustine incident: I know now, after reading your web pages, that I was sensing the presence of angels, not the Indian ghosts. But I did not know that then. I did not (still do not) know what an angel "feels" like.

Sure you do. You didn't, but now you know what the presence of God's angels feels like, because you've experienced it. I say that because your description fits my experience.

>Was it *really* angels of God, or is that just a label based on our concepts, like people who've had a near-death experience and said the Light was Jesus?

Yes, I think it was really angels of God. What happened was apparently a rescue mission. Because I believe God rescues, I believe God sent His angels to rescue those Indians.

>I remember the week I was in St. Augustine was a rare week for me, when I seemed particularly at peace with God.

Yes, indeed. From the results, you were on track at that time. Therefore, what you were doing then is what you need to do more of -- and what you were not doing then is what you need to do less of.

>I did not really believe God was listening. I just sort of hoped He was.

So you proved you don't have to "really believe" God is listening. To just sort of hope is sufficient. That shoots another church doctrine: the one that says God won't listen to us unless we "really believe."

>Although I understood that my sudden realization of entities and their gratitude was a result of my prayer, it never once occurred to me the communication could be coming from God, or from angels. That was the stuff of myth, or religious fanaticism, or madness.

Yes, that stuff is taught in this disbelieving society -- disinformation by those who don't want to believe in God or the Kingdom of God.

>I was (and still am) entirely schizophrenic about this. I know every parable in the gospels, every story Jesus told about the abundant joy and love of His Father's Kingdom. But I have lived with concepts of God as Santa Claus with a flame thrower, and God as callous and arbitrary and indifferent.

So ... an inner battle among competing theologies. How can we resolve it? Every theology is a theory. We can't know for sure which theology is true, because a lot of theological assertions are not testable, but we can *choose to assume* that what Jesus said about God and the Kingdom of God is true. Why make that assumption? In my case, because every other theology describes someone or something I do not respect, let alone worship.

"Santa Clause with a flame-thrower" is a perfect description of a very bad theology! May I quote you? By way of reciprocity, here is my somewhat less graphic description of a common theology: "A mean old man with a long gray beard who lives in the sky and plays favorites."

>The Kingdom of God was for others, not for me. And angels talked to God and mystics and prophets, and even "good" Christians, but not to me.

Another false notion, instilled when you were young, disproved by experience.

>On some level I still believe the things that were told to me when I was young.

Sure. Some of what we were told turns out to be true, and some turns out to be false. Little by little, step by step, we sort through our inheritance, accept some of it and reject some of it. I don't know anyone who did it all at once.

>When I read this letter, I am amazed at the extent of my self doubt. Interesting thing, denial. I am trying very hard to quit denying the reality of my life.

For most people, denial is a defense against something they don't want to believe, but that doesn't seem to be so in your case. Perhaps some of the self-doubt is coming from spirits who don't want you to believe. Or perhaps you are struggling with denial because some things seem too good to be true. If so, the subconscious defense is against the possibility of disappointment.

>It is of infinite importance for me to know that it is God Who is sending a message, and not some delusion on my part.

Yes, discernment is vitally important. But you need more categories than just those two. Part of your internal conversation may be from God; part may be self-delusion, and parts may be neither from God nor self-delusion.

I know thoughts that pop up in my conscious mind are coming either *from* or *through* my subconscious mind. It's like being in an airplane: I hear a lot of voices in my one set of earphones -- one of the voices is mine; some are from automatic systems in my aircraft; and some are coming in through my radio from any number of sources outside my aircraft. Some of those sources may be foolish, or foes pretending to be friends. How does anyone sort it out? By pattern recognition (learning to recognize various voices and types of voices by what they say and how they say it); by tuning my radio so as to increase the probability that I will hear who I want to hear and not others; and by use of call-signs (names), BUT always retaining a bit of skepticism because any call-sign can be faked.

Am I making this unnecessarily complicated or terribly difficult? I hope not. To me, prayer is very much like using a two-way radio, and discernment is very much like using a home computer. Neither is a magical gift of the gods. Neither is necessarily easy or difficult. Both are skills that can be learned.



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