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Carla’s Niche

Carla’s Letter Tapes

CAVEAT: Warning! These letters have not been edited by Carla. Expect errors.

Letter To C

September 5, 1991

Dear C,

First of all, thank you very much for your letter. I appreciate the notes from the road and realize that you’re asking questions that are extremely central and I ask you to realize that my answers are completely inadequate but I would be glad to work with these ideas just insofar as my own experience goes.

There’s only one thing in here that you want some real concerted thought on so I’ll just buzz through the rest of this.

With regard to this manuscript of yours that you need someone to read through, I always do anything I can for my readers. My health has been shaky. Not the arthritis part. The arthritis part is not at all life threatening, but I’ve had some odd other troubles in the intestines and there is something going on there which could be.

So I really have not been working, and I only call it working because people call it that. I think of it more of as what I want to do, to work with people that have read something of mine, or something that has been channeled with our group, and it’s really a joy to me. I’m in a hospital bed all day and so this is my company and I very much appreciate it.

But whether I could at the time in which you wanted me to read a book and critique it, or help you rewrite or help you write an introduction is beyond my knowledge as to whether I would be able to do that at any particular time. We’ll just see. Obviously, you haven’t gotten to the point where you want to get it read so that I really don’t have to worry about that and we’ll just deal with that as it comes up.

I don’t find it amazing that material is written in fiction, in non-fiction, in channeled material whatever. It does seem that ideas flow in a fairly universal way so that if something is happening in one country in one part of the world that may not have any communication whatsoever with another part of the world, yet still that same kind of process is going on in that part of the world.

I think there are seasons of thought as well as seasons of weather and emotion and everything else, so that we do tend to see ourselves coming and going once we have arrived at some opinion which we put down and we see that there have been quite a few other people working on the same material so we just have to assume that the archetypical mind is bringing in these particular subjects for us to consider at whatever level we might have the ability to consider them.

Of course, an even deeper prejudice of mine is that I think probably there is no way to know anything but in terms of what we think we might know. We all have the same equipment to know it with; there isn’t anything, no matter what it looks like in terms of teachers and students but a relationship that is completely democratic. Perhaps a teacher will simply have had more experience or will have had the gift given of more articulate speech or a love of reading that has enlarged the vocabulary and perhaps enlarged the kind of perceptions that one thinks.

There is always the utter uniqueness of each human being so that although we may all be getting the same cosmic influences, we are feeling them, reacting to them, creating what we think about them in terms of formations of the mind with thought, ideas, art, and so forth.

I’m sorry to hear that you had a really boring school experience. I, myself, had a ball learning and I didn’t start out with much luck because I was put in the first grade, and I was six years old, I should have been in the first grade, I was not griping about that. But, people used to be pretty insensitive and it isn’t any fun being an oddity and I could read when I was three. I could read music when I was 2-1/2. I was reading Little Women when I was in the first grade and unfortunately my teacher didn’t put me ahead in school or even do a little tutoring on the side, or allow me to do a little tutoring. I was perfectly willing to simply help those students that were trying to learn `see Dick run’ or whatever the heck those words are that you read in those little first grade readers.

None of those things were open to me as a kid so I did have a pretty miserable experience in school until I got to the point where it was okay to have some smarts and where it was not really that unusual—where everybody pretty much had come into full maturity of the intellect. I think when we look at a smart, very young child, I don’t think you’re looking at someone who is always going to be smarter than everyone else, you’re looking at someone who has simply had a head start; or who has brought into the incarnation more of an intellectual grasp of things than is given to most babies. It does not mean that that person is not a regular normal person, or that that person should be treated in any way other than normally.

All it would have meant for me is that I could have learned so much more if anybody had taken an interest in me at a time when I was very hungry to learn in grade school and in junior high and helped me to learn more. I would have really enjoyed that. When I got to college I just simply had a ball. I took far too many courses for the usual student because I was interested in everything and I just enjoyed myself to the fullest.

If I were able, at this time, I would probably still be taking a course a semester, not with a goal in mind of getting another degree or its being useful to me in the sense of making a living, but in the sense of furnishing my mind with the wonderful thoughts and opinions and information that’s been stored in so many fascinating areas of life, no matter where you turn, for so many centuries now.

So I understand what you’re saying about having to daydream your way through school, but I do think it’s a terrible waste of a good mind, not just because that mind could produce something. That’s not the point. But because that mind can enjoy more of what it hears and reads in the future if it has been furnished with a lot of the things that people have said in the past so that when some writer makes a reference to something that Plato said, or one of the Greek Philosophers said, you recognize it. You know what they’re talking about and you’re able to get a lot more out of it.

It isn’t that I feel that people should be intellectual at all. I’m not an intellectual myself. I don’t have any pretenses to that. I’m not a scholar. I don’t remember things. I’m terrible at trivial pursuits but I do feel that if people want to talk to me about something I’ll probably be able to draw on something in my past experience and reading and learning, that makes me more able to be close to the person and to be able to share a little bit better.

Of course, you can’t teach people how to care about people and that’s something I honestly do, and that makes a difference too.

You’re very welcome about my opinions regarding your burden at work. I’m glad I could help. As for the calling, it’s very difficult for me to hold the phone and I’d much prefer not to. I don’t give my number out because of that. The arthritis in my neck is such that I can put myself into a temporary state of paralysis if I stay on the phone too long.

I really, in any other situation, would probably have to be in a home or hospital because of the delicacy of what’s wrong with my neck and the fact that it’s inoperable. However, I have a wonderful, beautiful life here; Jim takes care of the things I can’t do and there isn’t any begrudging of it because we are both working on one thing and that is to give service to others through L&L. So we do what we can, both of us. We don’t worry about who’s doing what; we just try to get it done together.

So, I shall not be calling you and I ask you not to call me for the simple reason that it is very difficult for me to talk on the phone, but please do not consider this, in any way, a rejection or a discouragement. I’m sorry to be rude and ask you to write me and I’m sorry to write you on tape which you have to listen to in real time which is a slow process but it does seem to be the only way that I can do things now with a measure of comfort, so there you are.

I’m really glad that you have a landlady and a landlord that let you live a good life at a rate which you can afford. In life, unless there’s something very ambitious about a person, the level of living once you have enough to put on your back, it really doesn’t matter how much we have as long as we have enough to keep us warm and in clothes and so forth. I’m really glad that you do have this kind of situation.

If you do send me a copy of “Suppose,” it will not be for leisure reading. I do, in the leisure time read really junk stuff. This would be something I would be doing for you. So if that would change somewhat the way you feel about that I want to make that clear. I would not be reading it to pass the time, I would be reading it to do you service and probably would not have to read all of it, but would scan, I really don’t know.

All I can say is if you send it I’ll do my very best to get to it and I’ll do my very best to do whatever I can to help you with it. I can’t write for you—my style of writing is odd enough and crystallized enough that my writing really isn’t easy to mistake for someone else’s so I would be talking in general terms, I think probably, rather than “do this, do that,” I don’t like to tell people what to do anyhow because I feel that is a kind of infringement. I’ll do what I can for you.

If you can make it here (your zip code would suggest that you’re up near Chicago). That’s a fair drive and we do have people here if they wish, especially on a Sunday, because we have a Sunday meditation at 4:00 and if people are driving and they really can’t make it in one day. If they have money we find them a motel room that they could use and if they don’t have any money we have places where people can sleep over, although that is enough of a burden on Jim that I always make it clear that if the person comes to visit the person needs to come and expect to visit me, not Jim, because Jim will be doing all the things that I can’t do and it’s a seven day a week job and there’s just no time for him to sit down and be with people but I can do that.

So, if you do get here, let us know what we can do to help you get to the house or whatever and let us know ahead of time and nail us down because every once in a while we are asked to speak someplace else and then we wouldn’t be here on a Sunday and it would be a shame for you to make the trip and us not be here.

No, you don’t bore me. There isn’t any way you would bore me. You’re responding to me as somebody who has written or channeled a book that you care about and to me this is a kind of communication or contact in which I have an honor or a responsibility. It’s not a random thing that someone who writes me deserves the energy back. I get a lot of crazy questions but your letter is not full of them.

You’re not one of these people that I look at Jim and say “What can I say to this person?” I had a person write to me the other day and ask me if it hurt when I had arthritis. Now isn’t that an odd question? You just wonder where people are coming from.

I think Jim sent you the book and has you on the newsletter list and I will be sure and put on the envelope for him to check on that—I gave him the check which we will put in the kitty for future Light/Lines. They cost a good deal more than you’d think—upwards of about $800 but the time we get them printed, posted and get the address changes sent, because within three months, a lot of people will have moved, so the money helps, and we thank you for it very much.

In terms of what being 58 means, well, I just turned 48 and as near as I can tell it means we’ve traveled another circumference around the sun. I don’t think it means that we’ve gotten any smarter, and it may or may not mean that there have been any physical changes in our situation. It really doesn’t mean much of anything. It’s an artificial breaking up of time that makes people feel comfortable about things. It’s not really very meaningful at all. In terms of one’s situation in life, I’ve met 70 year olds that are young and strong and vital and excited by life and I’ve met 20 year olds that are completely burned out, so I don’t think age means a doggone thing. I think it’s what’s in your heart.

At any rate, happy birthday soon.

Now to tackle a question I can answer. Just to refresh your memory, your question was, “What steps can I take (if I haven’t taken that step yet) to help myself to financial independence so I can be free to write and relax. I have several projects on hand that I have which need revision so this is the $64,000 question for me.”

Okay, it’s a fair question with no answer that I know of but if we look at the question, we might be able to get more of a bead on the question, so let’s do that.

The question presumes that what we do to make money is completely coincidental—it doesn’t really have any effect or constitute any meaning in life, it’s just something that we get through so that we can be free to be of service in the way that we are sure the Creator wanted us to be of service. It certainly feels that way in the illusion and there isn’t anything that I could say that would deny that. I would be a fool to try to deny that the way that most people look on their jobs is that it’s just something that they do to get a certain amount of money so they can stay off the welfare rolls and be good citizens and hold up their end and not be a burden on society.

My experience with work has been very unusual. When I was a kid I worked as a barmaid. I loved the job. I found it to be probably one of the two or three most service oriented jobs I ever had because when people came into the bar alone and sat down and started drinking I knew that the reason that they came into the bar wasn’t really the beer or whiskey or whatever it was that they were drinking, not in most cases, it was loneliness. So when I didn’t have any customers to serve and if the person wanted me to I’d sit down and talk with the person, but mostly just listen; just listen so that person didn’t have to be alone. To me this was a wonderful service and I didn’t get paid much, maybe $1 per hour plus tips.

So in terms of service, the job itself provided me a path of service. The next job that I had was as a kindergarten teacher. Again, I got paid terribly small money—unbelievably small money for what I did, but I had these children—this was back in the days when nobody had daycare centers but it was an affluent Jewish Community school and it had a six hour a day kindergarten.

Now, no four or five year old should be in school for six hours in a day, that is not a good idea. It’s too long, they get too tired, they’re away from home too long. But these mothers were mothers that did not want to deal with their children, who wanted to get the kids out of the house so that they could be free.

So what happened again, I was getting barely enough to keep a roof over my head. This was in the hippey era but it didn’t occur to me to ‘tune in, turn on, and drop out.’ For one thing, I didn’t know anybody who even had drugs, and for another thing I was perfectly happy with my life as it was, it was very exciting and there was nothing to drop out of.

But, you see, I had these children to love and care for. There was my service, it was in the job. And then I moved from that job to the job I stayed with until L&L Research in 1970, and that was as a librarian. I adored that job. Again, I got very little money for it because I had gotten the job without a degree. I had a degree by that time in college, but I didn’t have a degree in library service so I got that job at very low wages, but it was my library, all thirteen grades of it.

Everybody left me strictly alone because the school was well over 100 years old, a private girls’ school. The reason nobody got in my way at that school, even thought it was a very prestigious private school here in town, was because there had been no librarian, they’d gotten along without one for all that time. Teachers would volunteer from time to time and had attempted to get together a library but it was just hopeless.

I had approximately 5,000 volumes, none of them catalogued, none of them in the proper order on the shelves, and I had the time of my life. If there’s one thing I can say about that part of my life before I started to show up with disabilities, was that I worked very quickly and very much enjoyed doing it. I just loved the kids and so there again, I was making all of $300 a month and living on it, and loving my job. I just did not focus on the money at all.

Then when I went to work for Don Elkins at L&L Research I asked for the same amount of money. He could have afforded more because he was an airline pilot making a six figure salary. But to me it was not important that I have more than I needed just to live so I continued with that until I was disabled.

But you see, I did not look for financial independence during that time. I found my path of service in my work. Now 1968 and 1969 was spent writing “The Crucifixion of Esmeralda Sweetwater,” but I did it after school and on the weekends. It was extra-curricular but I didn’t value it more than I valued being a librarian. To me service wasn’t in doing what I thought was of service because it never occurred to me that something could be non-service oriented—anything from washing the dishes on up because no matter what you’re doing you are being of service if you’re doing it in the spirit of love and caring and respect.

I think respect is a very important word—you respect everything and don’t listen to what the world says about it: “Oh, well that’s not very important, someone that cleans the house is not as important as a brain surgeon.” Well, that’s nonsense, the person that’s the brain surgeon is doing very important work and he’s had to spend a lot of time studying about it, but that doesn’t mean that his heart is one bit more open or his soul is one bit closer to the Creator, he’s simply doing a different path of service. If he does it with love, then it’s a service.

If he does it mechanically, it’s not being as much service as the person who is picking up the garbage, emptying the can, cleaning it out and putting the lid back on because he has pride in his job and because he loves the Creator and because he wants to make things nice.

What really is service in life? That’s the basic question. When statesmen go and do these wonderful things for countries and for the world, I still have to ask myself, “When that statesman comes home is he good to his wife, is he caring to his children, is he faithful to his ideas, is he a service-oriented individual?”

If the answer is, “Well, he wanted to serve the country but he really didn’t have time for his family,” then I’ll have to say, well then that person wasn’t entirely service oriented, was he? Because the most important part of service are the people closest to you. And whether you write a book or not, whether you’re a statesman or not, or whatever, dancer, healing, channeling, your daily life is your path of service. That stack of dishes, that little kid that’s getting on your nerves, that neighbor that won’t stop gossiping, all the little ins and outs of life and how to view them with the most compassion and how to try to find the positive options in any situation, these are the hallmarks of a life of service.

Service is related to the word servant which is a synonym in some ways for slave, and I think there is a surrender that we have to have. We surrender what we think is our path of service. We can’t decide what our path of service is. Listen, when I went to work for Don, I adored the man; I wanted to help him any way I could. It wouldn’t have mattered if he’d wanted me to learn plumbing. I would have learned plumbing. I loved that man with all my heart.

But no, he wanted me to do something I was well qualified to do. He wanted me to do research. So I read books, I took notes, the first book I put out for him, and I distanced myself from it because there were disagreements between me and him on it: I felt that there were two kinds of UFOs, he felt that they were all good, I thought there were probably some that were positive and some that were negative from what I could tell.

At any rate, I put years of work into that and of course, we’d written “The Crucifixion of Esmeralda Sweetwater” before I’d even quit my library job to go to work for him so I think that the way we look at, well, “I know that my way of service is this and this and this.” Well, maybe it is. I wouldn’t want to say it isn’t. But maybe it’s not. I certainly did not intend, when I got into L&L Research to become a channel.

That was the last thing on my mind. I had been in on the experiment to produce the channeling since 1962, but I had no desire to channel. I’m a listener, really. (I realize I’m spending this tape talking to you but it’s difficult to do anything else on a tape.) But I didn’t want to be a channel. I didn’t want to be some authority figure. I have feet of clay that go all the way of up to my neck. I’m just a person and the idea that somebody was going to listen to something that I was channeling was just spooky to me. I had to get over a lot of that ego stuff. But Don was insistent, and finally in 1974 he said “Your free lunch is over, you’ve got to learn to channel.”

The reason he said that was all the channels from the original group had either moved out of town or had just quit channeling. So in order to keep the experiment going he had to have a channel so he started having meetings every day, and it took me a long time, two months, I think, to get my very first communication, which was “I am Hatonn. I am having trouble with this instrument.” (Laughs)

But I didn’t know that was my path of service. I had absolutely no idea. Apparently it is my path of service, I’ve been doing it ever since. It’s now 1991 so 1974 to 1991 is what, 27 years. Okay, so at this point it is my path of service. It’s something I’ve had enough experience with to do a good job. I’ve had enough experience working with other people to be able more and more to tune in to the questions that they really are asking, even if it’s between the lines.

But all I ever wanted to do in this world was help. And I think you can help any way, any level, at anything. I don’t think there’s anything, the earth, manmade things, machines, anything that isn’t in some way alive and part of Creation and would appreciate a kindly, helpful person that’s dealing with them instead of an aggravated angry person.

So you see, I’m the last person to ask about strategies for financial independence because I never made more than $300 a month in my life. But look at me, here I am. Don died—the great tragedy of my life, so far. He left me this house, he left me his life insurance and I put it into a trust after I read a couple of books about how to manage money and realized that whatever else I might be good at in this life, taking risks with money was not my forte.

This was not interesting, this was not fun, this was not something I wanted to do, so I went out and shopped until I found somebody with a twinkle in her eye that loved to do what she was doing, D she’s been my trustee ever since. She switched banks, I followed her, Jim and I depend on her completely. We trust that she will do the very best she can to get us an income from what Don left us that will enable us to eat. The house is paid for and we’ve always somehow been able to come up with the money for heating in the winter, we’re okay, and I haven’t done anything to deserve that.

And even if I could work (which I haven’t been able to for quite some time) I would rather being doing this and I can do this because that’s the way things happened. But you see, I didn’t force them to happen, I didn’t foresee them happening, I didn’t expect them to happen, I didn’t plan for it, I didn’t hope for it, it didn’t occur to me.

So basically what I’m saying is I don’t know if there are any steps that you can take for abundance. I know that we try to follow the law of abundance at L&L but our law of abundance is that we don’t ask for a specific amount. We ask people to give what’s comfortable for them and that’s based on trust. Maybe the trust is not what it should be but we trust that people will give what they can and that people who have a lot of money will give us a lot of money and that will make up for the prisoners and the people on Social Security and the younger people that aren’t old enough to have jobs yet that can send nothing.

Of course, there are greedy people and they see us in the light of something-for-nothing and that’s the way they see us, okay, and they order everything and send us two bucks. We just hope that it all works out and so far we have always been able to pay our bills.

Now we have gotten to the point, because things have gotten so expensive and people haven’t really caught up with that in terms of the wages they make or just the basic realization of how much things cost. It costs so much more now to publish a book or to send things out that we haven’t been able to do any new projects for several years and we have several projects all lined up and ready to go if only there were money, so I could wish that there were money. I probably could write a mass mailing to everybody on our mailing list and say “Here are all these things that we could be offering to you guys if you wanted to send us some money,” but it just feels to me like if what we have is any good then the law of abundance says we will have the money to do it.

The rest of it is simple patience and being satisfied with what you do have and being glad that at least we can keep up with what we have in print.

So to me, I guess what I would say is to look in your workplace, in your environment—in all of your environments, whether it’s church or community center or volunteer work, or your family or in the neighborhood, and to look at each situation as an opportunity for your service and in doing your service, the patterns get clearer and clearer.

Once you surrender that “I know what I’m going to do to be of service, this is my path,” and you say, “Lord, show me the way.” (“Lord” by whatever name you know. I don’t mean to say a Christian Lord or a Buddhist Lord or any kind of a Lord, but the Creator of us all.) You say, “Well I’m here, I’m willing, I’ll do what’s in front of my face and I trust you to put it in front of my face. I trust that things will be attracted to me for my learning and for my giving.”

And then you look at everything, including things that are said to you meanly, insults, and everything, and you look at them as an opportunity to find a positive choice—a choice for love and not for fear. And in the way that you deal with life itself, that’s the beginning of your path of service. It doesn’t matter where you do it, you can do it in a checkout aisle at Kroger when there’s this aggravating lady who won’t keep her kid quiet and the kid keeps picking up things out of your basket. What’s the positive option? Sometimes it’s kind of hard to find, but it’s always there.

There’s a great difference between tolerance and charity. You can be tolerant of people and it’s a real cold kind of judgmental tolerance. But when you change that over to love given without expectation of love in return, you’re just being nice because that’s who you are, that’s charity. And I think that’s the beginning of the path of service, and that’s free. It doesn’t take any extra time; it doesn’t matter where you are.

So, as you can see, abundance seminars are never going to come out of L&L Research. (Laughs) But to me, if I were you, I would relax. I would try to find a job, since you don’t feel that your job is your place of service, I would look for a job that’s truly a 9 to 5, that you don’t have to take a bunch of stuff home that messes up your evenings and weekends. And then you can enjoy those leisure hours that are afforded to us because we can turn on those electric lights and everything.

Go ahead and do your reading, and your relaxing, and your writing, and don’t put a time limit on it, don’t be impatient, don’t try to get too much done at any one time. Don’t put pressure on yourself. Give yourself plenty of time to chill out, to relax, to meditate, to enjoy, and when you have an inspiration go and write it down and do your thing with the book, but don’t make it a “be all, end all,” it’s part of your life.

It’s part of your service, but the greatest service anyone can offer through the years is just who she is—your consciousness. But we can’t see it. We’re in an illusion, but the planetary consciousness is made up of light and each of us is a certain strength of light and every little situation looking for the positive options, looking for love, looking to be of service, accepting whatever it takes to be of help to somebody else, not that there are good jobs and that there are menial jobs, but that all jobs are the same and being glad to do the chief part or the Indian part, whatever. And that’s the main service, whatever you are. Just who you be.

Let that free you from the thought of, “Oh, well, I’ll have to get this thing in order so that I can be of service.” You’re already being of service. You just basically need to relax into it and let what you need come to you. Now if you feel that you’re in the wrong job and that you need a different kind of job or if you want financial independence, you can always make affirmations. You can say “I will receive that which was intended for me to receive and I will receive it very quickly so that I can be of service as I was intended to be.’

That’s not asking for money, or a house, or whatever, that’s just …

(Side 1 of tape ends.)

I know people in those abundance courses tell you to focus on visualizing exactly what you want, but to me that leaves out the will of the Creator. What is the will of the Creator? What does my higher self have planned for me in this incarnation? I’m not so proud that I think I know that. I certainly am not. And I wonder at people that are so absolutely sure that they know what the Lord has in mind for them.

Of course it especially makes me mad when somebody, like a parent, writes in and says, “Well, I know that this is what my daughter is supposed to do and I just need help in getting her to see what God’s plan is for her.” And I’m thinking, “Lady, how about quitting worrying about God’s plan for her and start thinking about God’s plan for you? Does God really want you to be breaking your daughter’s heart by not valuing what she is, in fact, doing?”

So basically, I’ve just got to say, step back from it, take a longer view, value yourself more and productivity or manifested things less and know that you are going to be of service and that you are on your path of service and there is no moment when you are alone and bereft of the guidance of spirit. Any time that you feel that you’re getting bankrupt and you’re not in touch with that, the thing to do is not to work harder, but to stop. Sit under a tree, or sit in your hammock or in your living room and watch TV or whatever it takes just to wash your mind clean of all the bitterness so that you can start again without the blame and without the feelings of unfairness.

Just assume that whatever challenges and difficulties have come your way are part of the lessons that you are to learn in order to be of more service and in order to be able to love more unselfishly, more completely, and allow that love more to come through you so that you don’t have that terribly limitation of humanity, because humans can only love so much and then it’s gone. We don’t have that much within us. We have to open up to infinite love and that is surrender. That’s a hollowing out of ourselves. So instead of making ourselves more and more strong in the way we think we should be, I think the way to spiritual strength and spiritual abundance is a servant mentality. “It’s not my will but thine and I’m willing to do anything that you ask me to do, Lord.” That kind of thing.

Whatever else this attitude does, it does relax you because you do begin to feel that you are on the beam and I don’t care who says different to me, I know the reasons that I’m doing what I’m doing, I believe in them, I’m continuing them, my spiritual practice is enabling me to be more and more conscious of the presence of all these positive options in all these difficult situations; that I don’t have to jump and be mad and be upset; that I can sit and kind of look at it and then take several steps back and try to look at it from the perspective of “what is this going to matter in 10,000 years?”

Then you begin to get a feeling of the priorities that are really true in your life and the services that are really true in your life and always the first service you can perform is to be yourself. Always be yourself. Be honest, be straight, let yourself shine, and if you’re shining while you’re picking up the kids’ room, while you’re bicycling to work, you’re still shining. And maybe the world as it is can’t see that, but spirituality is all about the things that you can’t see. If you can see something, it’s not real. If you can’t see it, it’s probably more real than the things that you can see.

For instance, I’m sitting on a couch. I’m in a body sitting on a couch. The body is made up of all these electrons and protons and all that stuff with all that space between them. You hear about all the vast distances between the tiny little particles that nobody has ever been able to see under a microscope, so really we’re not solid at all. We’re not really what we think we are. When we look into the mirror, we’re seeing an illusion, literally. And this couch is an illusion. It, too, is made up of these atoms with all this space between them—atoms that nobody’s ever been able to see.

Yes, they see the path of energy but they haven’t seen mass. So the weight of things, the appearance of things, the testability of things, all the things that we think of as reality are in, fact, literally an illusion. A predictable illusion, there are local rules and we’ve gotten a long way by figuring out those rules but nobody knows why the rules are like they are.

Whereas if you take a quality, like love, how can you show that? How can you say “Here, here is a handful of love; here’s two cups of love.” You can measure two cups of flour but you can’t measure two cups of love. It’s a quality. There’s no amount to it; it’s infinite.

So abundance to me is the feeling inside of myself that I have enough love flowing through me to give to people and to myself. I think one of the hardest things in the world to do is to fall in love with yourself and it is the thing that we all have to do—we have to fall in love with ourselves.

Because when Jesus gave those commandments that wiped out the Ten Commandments, he said, “Forget those, and here are these two—just love the Lord and love your neighbor as yourself.” Well, there’s a little tricky thing in that second one because you’re supposed to love your neighbor as you love yourself. That means you’ve got to love yourself. And since we know ourselves so well; we know our erroneous thinking and all our mistakes and all of those things that we’ve done that we feel we shouldn’t have and all those things we haven’t done that we wish we had. We know perfectly well we’re not doing that great.

Well, okay, that’s the person we have to fall in love with first. That’s the child of God to deal with first. And it’s kind of a mind thing to separate yourself from yourself in manifestation as a human being. But really, the human being part of us is going to live and die. It’s part of the illusion. Whereas, we, as fields of consciousness are going to be going on and have been going on forever.

So it’s that field of consciousness that takes a look at the life lived, you see. So if you can simply relax into life and find the joys in the moment and celebrate the sorrows of the moment and the sorrows of the self with a great respect and never judge the self but say, “Yes, that was a hard one and I don’t know how I did on that one, I wish I’d done better,” but you’ll never know in this illusion. You can’t be judging yourself, you have to say “The Creator has already forgiven me so why am I not forgiving myself?” And you fall in love with this seemingly imperfect human being.

In having the compassion to forgive yourself for your failures, your self-perceived failures, you learn the compassion to deal lovingly, compassionately, and without judgment with other people in your life and you become more and more relaxed, more and more mellow, more and more able to find a sense of humor when you really need it. We all have to deal with so much loss in our lives. We’re born into this life with a death sentence.

We’re not going to be here forever, and we continue getting older, and we continue losing people we love and we continue having hard things happen to us, but this is not a punishment. This is given to us so that we can learn how to deal with experiences in a compassionate way.

So obviously, I am not answering the question that you asked in a way that would tell you how to become financially independent. The independence that I’m looking for and the independence that I’m talking about is the independence from judgment as to what abundance consists of. It might consist of money, it might consist of grace. It might consist of the ability to love.

But whatever it is, if you open yourself to that possibility, persistently, daily, in whatever form of prayer, or meditation, or contemplation or reading or just momentary thoughts to center yourself during the day you’ll be working on that primary goal and that, I do believe, is the true nature of abundance.

Well, I’ll send this out with lots of my love and if I can do anything for you in the future I’ll certainly try. But as I said I can’t promise that I’ll be able to read, but if I can I will and if I can’t I’ll let you know. If it seems like it has to be put off because I have to be in the hospital, I’ll let you know that. I just trust that these things will occur and I will do the best that I can.

I do wish you much light on your path and I don’t think you look anywhere near 58 by the way, I think you look great, terrific, absolutely beautiful and thank you for the picture.

God bless, and you take care of yourself,

Carla

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