Book Excerpt: May Cause Miracles by Gabrielle Bernstein
The first step in choosing love over fear is to understand your fear. As a student of A Course in Miracles I learned to become the witness to my fear-based thoughts. Each time I felt fear set in, I'd take a deep breath, step outside of my thoughts and actions, and witness my behavior. By witnessing my fears I saw how delusional they actually were. For instance, early in my career I ran a public relations business. Every new client brought a new opportunity to negotiate my monthly retainer. I hated negotiating. It made me feel anxious and jittery, and I'd lose my sense of calm. When I acknowledged my fears around negotiating for more money, I realized it was related to a fear that I'd acquired as a young woman: that women shouldn't ask for more. This was an outside projection the world had created and I'd chosen to believe it. I honestly don't even remember where or when I picked it up, but it stuck to me like glue. This fear-based illusion from the past replayed itself enough times that it became a belief system I was faithful to. But by getting honest about my fear, I determined how this lack mentality had become a fear-based pattern in my mind. Throughout the book, I'll reinforce the message that witnessing your fearful patterns is the first step to detaching from them, and I'll provide support and guidance as you witness your own fears in all areas of your life.
Then comes willingness. You can change a pattern only if you're willing to change it. A Course in Miracles says that the slightest willingness is all you need to receive the guidance to change. When we become open to letting go of our fear, we open our heart, mind, and energy to be guided to a new perspective. Willingness raises your consciousness of new possibilities and ignites what I call your ~ing (your inner guide). Your ~ing is the voice of love, your inspiration and your intuition. Your ~ing steers you out of fear and back to love. All you need is a little willingness to get your ~ing on and receive guidance to change.
This guidance will come in different forms: intuition, inspiration, and sometimes even through synchronicities. Often we can experience intuition as a strong inner knowing that offers us guidance of some form. Inspiration can be experienced as a feeling of flow and excitement that comes through in moments when our thoughts and actions are aligned with love. Then there are moments of synchronicity, which are really groovy— like when you're thinking about your mother and she calls or when you keep hearing about a new book and the next day it falls off the shelf in the store. As you add up the exercises in this book, the presence of your inner guide will become more apparent while intuition, inspiration, and synchronicity will flow naturally.
Three other components are key to living a miraculous life: gratitude, forgiveness, and love. First comes gratitude. An emphasis on gratitude is the only attitude for the miracle worker. Living a grateful life creates more abundance, acceptance, and appreciation. To transform your fears back to love, you must embrace a grateful way of being.
Then comes forgiveness. The act of forgiveness is to the miracle worker as lettuce is to the raw foodie. Forgiveness allows us to cleanse ourselves of the old, junky fear and shines light on the darkness of our worries, doubts, and suspicions. Rather than continuing to play the role of victim, we can forgive and be set free. With each choice to forgive, we shift our perception from fear to love.
Finally, there is love—the most crucial ingredient. A Course in Miracles teaches that the only thing missing in any situation is love, and where there is fear there is no love. Therefore, living with an open heart and embracing love as our true purpose is essential to living a miraculous life.