2003-05-04-Hope & Undying Hope
Topic: Hope & Undying Hope
Group: Rio Rancho TeaM
Music: Dorenda on Piano:
Prelude: "You Are My Hiding Place"
Postlude: "I Will Sing the Wondrous Story"
Master Teacher, We come to you with Light in our heart and in our beings, much like the illuminated paper bag of last week in the lesson that we had . and we appreciate the visualization that we saw in real life just the day after (which Gerdean can share with the group). We appreciate that we continue to grow in our love and knowledge of You, and that eternity is a long time, with vast reaches and heights and depths and widths beyond our comprehension. But it is what we are entitled to, by victory achieved by You, and we are forever grateful.
We ask for the teachers that You will present today and for the lessons that we will receive, that they will impress us in terms of our eternal careers which are now and will continue forever. And for those that You know that are of special needs in our hearts and our minds, we include them before You as well. Amen.
TOMAS: Good afternoon, beautiful friends. This is Tomas, your teacher. Come and cuddle in to my embrace, and we'll chat a while about the things that you fantasize - those things that you hold as Ideals to aspire toward - those things for which you have hoped.
I listen to you tell tales among yourselves of the lives you live, the ways in which you occupy yourselves and find your joy: your selection of flowers for your garden, hanging baskets and the like; the way you wear you hair and the anticipated new style; the political picture and your preferences of philosophy; and these all are reflective of the Fruit of the Spirit that we all know as Hope.
There is, however, a major difference between the Hope that is held in the heart of the unbeliever or the sleeping child as compared to the Hope of the second-miler, and the range of appreciation is a very individual and personal matter. Last week, however, Matthew inquired about the quality of Hope and asked that it be addressed, and so we shall again call Hope out into the center of the floor and give it a look-see. As it perches or plunks itself there before us - the Fruit of Hope - let me ascertain from you each your own understanding of Hope, since you, in so many ways, are the embodiment of Humanity. You have within you innocence as well as wisdom.
Janet, you're a great one for images. You have already told us that you Hope your haircut on Friday will be stunning and effective for your needs, and that the Impatiens you planted will bear up under these Spring nights. How else is it that Hope realizes itself in your mind and your heart? What does Hope mean to you?
Janet: Are you waiting for me to answer now or later?
TOMAS: I will put you on the spot.
Janet: Well, okay. I'm just lucky. Very, very lucky. Because I could have been all alone . all this time . without anybody . and here I found Carl and there he was . 'ripe for the picking'. ya know? You could put it that way. And he was very glad to get picked. Weren't you, dear?
Carl: (amidst group laughter) Yes!
Janet: He better say 'yes' or he's in big trouble! (laughing) No. I'm very, very lucky . and very happy.
TOMAS: And so you had Hoped for a companion?
Janet: Hmmm. I hadn't even thought about it. And then all of a sudden . there he was!
TOMAS: It is as if your needs were known even before you knew them.
Janet: Um-hmm. That's right.
Janet: That's right. They have. I'm just lucky.
TOMAS: You are a perfect example of the Perfection that we discussed last week. Carl, how has Hope impressed you?
Carl: There's a line from a song that we sing occasionally. It's called 'There's a River in Judea' and it says, "Often times I dream of music of a River that freely flows, And the song it sings is sweeter than honey, one everybody knows. Late at night I hear it singing and again I rise at dawn and it fills me up with Hope and good will - the will to go on."
Dorenda, speak to us of Hope.
Dorenda: I was wondering what the difference between Faith and Hope was. That was going through my mind, and I was thinking what I might answer. Hope, to me, seems to be a forward projection of what you would like to have happen. But Faith seems to be a little bit more constant, perhaps. You didn't ask about Faith, I know. But Hope seems to me to be an outward and obvious show of effort of what you would like to have happen. That's what Hope is to me.
And Willie, you are the one who asked to hear about Hope. Perhaps you can tell us what it is about Hope that you sought to know more about.
Willie: Well, something made me think of it last week, but I don't think I'm as confused as I was at one time. But, several years ago when I was going through a very difficult time in my life, I figured that up until that point - Because I worked for Catholic charities for a while, I figured I had 'charity' pretty well down pat. And 'Faith' is what I was going through, in terms of the trial of confirming my belief system, and more-or-less reassuring me of what 'Faith' was and what it contained. And then I was left with - Then, okay, of the three: 'Faith, Hope and Charity' .
Then I figured by default I learned what Hope was because of the trial that Faith took me through. And that Faith became (like Dorenda was saying, it's not on the table for discussion, but ) to me, Faith was 'knowing what will be' and Hope is the opportunity to create what you 'know will be' so that . so long as you are Faithful to that picture of Hope, there is the continual opportunity to create your expectations or have them fulfilled.
TOMAS: Yes. You have given it thorough thought. Faith, Hope and Charity. I see. That is a good springboard for study. As are the Fruits of the Spirit in the Urantia text that I have addressed, individually, including that of Undying Hope. And so I will review briefly the quality of Undying Hope which seems to be the kind of Hope you each understand the best - as an extension of Faith. (T/R having difficult time speaking)
ANATOLIA: This is something that I am able to address, only because it is something that our world, where I hail from, was a hallmark for this virtue.
There are many ways to look at Hope: from a bottom-up point of view, as --when you are at the bottom of the social structure or are the foundation upon which power has its base, Hope is the belief and desire which enables one to look out beyond their current struggle to become Living Faith, beyond the current suffering. It is not as if it is a belief or understanding that the life one is then leading will become one of luxury or substitute servitude for being served. But rather it is the belief and the expectation that through denial and through self-sacrifice one's Soul will radiate and rebound to joys and grace far beyond the limitation of that experience at the moment.
In other words, one of the greatest examples in your world experience is that of the Negro slave of American vintage, and the vast array of both spiritual music and cultural practice that led to the potential Civil Rights movement that continues to be a part of the developing cultural growth of your society. that which came from unfathomable pain, sorrow and utter despair. But despite such a scenario, the Hope that sprung from that experience far out-strips the misery and the pain that bred such sweetness and flowering to a new height and a new experience.
This is not to dismiss the experience that was inhumane, cruel and brutal by any standards, but rather to show that the Hope that was lived and conveyed to future generations is the Fruit that came from such misery that superceded that which was the experience.
I had said that my world had Hope as its Cornerstone, because . being a world that was settled in Light and Life -- that 1,000 years of Peace (that has been foretold in your world; that looking at your current circumstances and what you have known from your past and all of the cumulation of Human History you have that to look forward to, that "thousand year reign" as it is known), has been foretold. Whether in this world or beyond it, you picture that which is in your mind, which is in your heart, which is the outgrowth of Faith. It is as Jesus had foretold in the parable of the vine and the branches, that the many illustrations or examples of bread and wine, and particularly the grape and the wine imagery that is presented, one can say Faith is the Fruit that grows, but Hope is the Wine that is produced. It is the Spirit that Lives despite current circumstances which may limit one's view, dampen one's spirits and discourage, if not remove, the life-force entirely . given the circumstances which one may experience.
But, like the saying 'Hope springs eternal,' it is the vision, the view, and the expectation that Justice and Glory will be the eventual outcome; that despite years, generations, if not a lifetime, and civilization, built one upon the other, will see the eventual justification of why suffering is called for. The life that is lived in good and bad times. And yet, the expectation that ultimate perfection and beauty and peace will prevail is what leads us to continue to Hope.
I will leave you with this thought: when your world is settled in Light and Life, the brilliance that is known as the Love that is shared, the unity that is experienced in the expression of Light as a beautiful form of being, and in such glory and in such magnificence of such unity in being - there is yet the constant Hope that this will be shared by all of creation, that the unicorn and lamb, the deer and the lion cub, will all grow in unified force for a life form that will be known as beautiful by all.
This is my Hope and Expectation - that your world will be such and that you will experience it. Be of one mind and one heart for all beats as one. It is my pleasure to be with you and I will return, if need be; otherwise, we return to our chief teacher for the day.
TOMAS: Thank you Anatolia for your assistance. And well done.
The idea of Hope is very cheerful because it is focused on an improvement, an improved outcome, but Hope is born in less than perfect circumstances. When you look out upon the sea of humanity and recognize the darkness they suffer under, the sorrow they live in and with, the cloak of darkness that comes away with you as if it were the dust from the highway on your feet or the residue of ash on your shoulders is Hope . that quality of Hope that wishes well for those who wait for the Spirit to embark with them upon their eternal adventure. Hope is a beautiful Fruit of the Spirit because it so readily reflects those areas where Hope is not.
This is the beauty of Undying Hope, for those of you who live well within the parameters of Spirit Reality. Hold your Hope for those who know not the joys of Sonship, for you have no need for personal hope. Like Paula, you have everything you've ever asked for . All your needs are met.
Even so, as a participant in the human condition, there are always lessons to be learned and refinements to be made in your advancement into Perfection Attainment. And sometimes your perception of the Father's will, or the Mother's desires, are presented to you as an 'undertaking' or an 'assignment . a 'thing to do,' a 'matter to be fulfilled,' a 'place to be acquired,' a stature to be attained . in the material realm, as if it were a 'presentation,' a 'proof' of your association of divinity.
The building of a Church, for example, or a Temple, or a Light and Life Center. The choice of a marital partner, and the concept of procreating a child. The idea of moving to a new location and/or buying a bigger house or downsizing into a smaller one. These human experiences are testing grounds for the Fruit of the Spirit Hope.
You Hope you make the right choice. You Hope the choice you make benefits everyone. You Hope the choice is one that will lead you forward. You Hope that your attitudes and aspirations are proved to be correct. And you Hope for the support of your community and your peers. These are a part of the thrilling adventure of personality expression as each of you put one foot in front of the other in an attempt to do His will and to manifest His good works in your lives.
Undying Hope is that whatever choice you make good will result. Even if you've made a poor decision, or chosen a lesser way, you will have learned a lesson that will give you greater perspective and insight into the Divine nature. You will have been forged further on the anvil of experience. Not to be held up as a laughingstock for making mistakes, no, but as a courageous sojourner in this imperfect milieu, an explorer in unforaged areas. The same is true for philosophers who express themselves or for politicians who want to better the world we live in. They are all Hopeful. All of you are human, and while Undying Hope may be a Fruit of the Spirit, the human being continues to Hope for better things, for brighter days, for sustained health, for fair weather, for all the things that innately are yours and which you yearn for in your advance into Perfection Attainment. Those things which are less important will diminish, to be replaced by the Hope of other and more pertinent things in your life.
But you know from your experience how Reality operates -- to offer you, always, an alternative choice, an opportunity to seek the way the Spirit of Truth would lead you into. And in this path you will go from one joyous experience to the next, sometimes winning, sometimes failing, but always advancing in Perfection Attainment.
This should suffice for a review of the peculiar Fruit of the Spirit which is Hope. I Hope for you the best of all things, including the worst of all things that you might better appreciate the best of all things. Because in the end Faith, Hope and Charity will prevail. The spirit will win out, and we rejoice in those mountain top experiences wherein we know that what we do is blessed and sanctioned On High, and what we fail to do in this life we will do in the next.
What would you like to address this afternoon, children, in terms of your interaction? Are there questions?
Elena: I have a question that came up a couple of times in my mind as you and Anatolia were talking. Hope seems to be, in many respects, a singular activity like there is one person Hoping that something will happen, and it's kind of something that happens mentally or internally. And it seems also that we've been instructed before about our will actually going out, and what we desire having an effect on what will come in the future. And I'm wondering how different Hope and Desire is. It seems to me a kindred thing. So I guess my question is two-fold: (1) is to kind of compare the difference between Hope and Desire . Maybe that's next week's lesson! . and then (2) how our Hopes combine. Does that make sense?
TOMAS: Yes, it makes sense. It is a complex question. A two-fold or a three-fold question. But you present the word 'desire' as compared to 'Hope' and desire is most often regarded as relevant to the human condition whereas Hope has an ethereal aspect to it. Desire is more like fire and Hope is smoke, but they are certainly related, and often confused.
It is easy to desire something with a passion, and yet, is it something that will serve humanity or higher interests or are you only passionate? And yet, in order to help Hope manifest as Reality - a certain Passion is required. It could be said that degrees of Hope call for other degrees of intensity. You can Hope for something and 'desire' something at the same time, but unless you do something about it, it's still a Hope. And 'desire' often is so intense as to effect some kind of action - even if it's wrong - whereas Hope may continue to internalize as a yearning.
It is true, your observation that both Anatolia and I have focused largely on the Personal aspect of the quality of Hope. That is to say, it is an individual thing. That is because of different tastes and preferences and different levels of Perfection Attainment. But Hope, when amassed, is very powerful and can indeed move mountains. This is evident in a 'movement.' The Teaching Mission 'movement' has Hope of affecting the spiritual darkness of Urantia with the Light of Truth. And there your Combined Hope is being demonstrated and is effective by your United Hope for what you do.
Politics presents another example of Hope in action. The democrats hope to wrench the steering wheel back from the republicans. And as they select a candidate and weigh their chances, their Hope looms large at winning the election. Hope is a vital part of attainment . Even in competition: "I Hope our team wins." "I hope she fails and makes a fool of herself." "I hope my cake doesn't fall." All of these are valid uses of the quality of Hope but their motives fall short of the Fruit of the Spirit.
But this is the way evolution is, you see? The higher levels of appreciation for these Fruits of the Spirit are only realized after time and after trials that elevate your recognition of those things which are worth Hoping for - worth desiring - worth working for - and those which are worthy of letting go.
The Undying Hope that we aspire to is the Blanket Hope that Anatolia glorified -- that Hope that all will come to know the Beauty of the Lord, and that those who are hiding from Him will come to hide within Him, and take their strength and sustenance from Him, thus entering into the Kingdom and joining the choir of angels who rejoice in being a part of the Family of God. This is the only Real thing worth Hoping for, for once this is found - everything else is an effect of the First Cause. Is this helpful?
Elena: Yes. Thank you, Tomas. That's good. Thanks.
TOMAS: But, am I suggesting that you not Hope for those personal dreams and personal ambitions? Certainly not, for those are the classrooms that you attend in determining the way that you live your life -- whether it is self centered or broad centered, whether it is Spirit led or people led -- and then watching, when you make the wrong choice, how God will make lemonade out of your lemon. All of this is possible because of Free Will, and because it is already understood that if you had all the answers you wouldn't have to have Hope nor would we have Hope for you.
But Undying Hope leads you forward, and it will continue to lead you forward as you merge your Hope with Divinity, for the joys experiencing God will bring - for the opportunities to make mistakes, change your mind, become adept - even artful.
Matthew: Those are some terrific descriptions. Thank you for responding to my question of last week. It helps a lot.
TOMAS: It is helpful when you indicate your conscious need to know. It is possible for us to ascertain, to some of extent, the needs of your Soul. That is what we Hope to address and respond to, but my children, you are all so very clever at disguising yourself and your soul needs. They are hidden in Him, perhaps, but need to be brought out into the Light of Truth and placed on the table, that we might examine them and glean from them that which will help you in your life, and let go of those which are holding you back from greater happiness and greater enjoyment of the experience, as well as helping you be a better teacher and letting go of those situations that temporarily offer no Hope of improvement.
There is a phrase in the Recovery community that defines insanity as 'doing the same thing expecting different results.' And there are so many people who mistake Hope for this practice. They 'hope' that someday things will change and they continue to do the same thing over and over. Our Hope is that you change and stop beating your head against the wall . "insanely". That is something all of you do but you don't reveal such peculiar behaviors because they are insane, and you like to only put your 'best foot' forward. You like to reveal only that which you are relatively sure is already relatively perfect, so that you eliminate the need to expose yourself to any kind of judgment or alienation. And this too shall pass. Eventually as you grapple with Sonship issues and Correcting Time issues, you will realize your true Self and know the areas where you Shine and the areas that are still muddy and you will eagerly seek clarification in those muddy areas so that you can Shine all the way to Paradise.
So bring me your dirty hands and your muddy feet and we'll clean them up, right here on the table in our midst. In due course you will be scrambling to see who goes first.
Janet: Well, you know, you were talking about Faith and Hope and how when we really need them we can find them. And there were a couple of times in my life when I've been all the way down and wondering which way was up. And my Faith sustained me, and there was Hope, and it all turned out alright.
TOMAS: It is the experienced Adjuster that you carry within you that was your life saver, that enabled you to come around to seeing the way clear to the Lily Pad of Faith upon which you sit - high and dry - today. But it was you who sought Divine Counsel and the Divine Way, and this contributes to the growth of your Soul and the Reality of your Being.
All of you are so very Real. Each of you could stand alone without your human body. Each of you are a vital Personality, recognizable by those who know you and love you. You are well on your way. You will be able to 'be there' for those who flounder, still - who lose their way. You will be able to offer a word, a helping hand, a gesture. Your energy will enter into the atmosphere that alters the molecules allowing the Divine to direct Itself into the minds of those mortals who struggle and seek for a reason to have Hope - when all is lost.
Be the eyes and ears of Spirit, little ones, on this very needy world, for these very needy individuals who look at you and wonder why you have so much good cheer. Let Him not hide within you but come out . and joyously! . to mingle among the many who rejoice in knowing Him. And when they are alien to you, take your comfort in that sanctuary that you share deep inside - where you abide together with the Father - that Eternal Soul that seeks to Immortalize you - and will if my Hope is effective.
Run along and play, then, Children, and find what the world has to offer you in terms of challenges this week. Look to those who have lost Hope or those who have never considered how high Hope can take them. Whose petty little dreams fall short of the Desires of the Father for them. Infuse them with a hunger to know more and the assurance that the Universe will respond to their slightest flicker.
Peace be upon you. Anatolia and I embrace you and look forward to our next session together. Farewell.
The illuminated paper bag is a reference to last Sunday's lesson in which the illuminated paper bag was an illustration of the material being infused with divine light. On Monday, we drove to Santa Fe to hear and see presidential hopeful Congressman Dennis Kucinich at the High School and there in the middle of the gymnasium floor, serendipitously, was a six foot tall illuminated paper bag!