Excerpt From CHAPTER 9 AN INVITATION TO OPENNESS page 188Published September 30, 2017
My nemesis, Old Bill, tried to upset my desire to become a better
person. He still got under my skin, but the effects diminished. I
discerned that his compulsions were devised to create enemies. Old
Bill needed someone to judge in order to temporarily escape the
darkness of his own nature. We were not so dissimilar. At the mission,
we harbored the same angst, because the pain of our lives
forced us to judge each other. I was discovering a way out—or a way
above— that pain. I thanked God for Roy Masters!
“Merry eyes twinkling….” was Masters’ descriptive way of
explaining a nonjudgmental discernment that came from one’s
patient desire to resist temptation without resentment. This was no
simple “whistling in the dark” philosophy. With fear in the heart and
knees knocking, one could find the courage to be still, stand his
ground, and witness the opposing forces of evil.
Patience gave one the power to rise above a conditioned reflex
response to life’s problems. We are the sum total of our experiences
and burdened by the accumulation of our wrong reactions to pressure
and temptation. Trying to solve our emotional conflicts often leads to
consciousness-reducing addictions. Emotional upsets destroy our
objectivity, and we make terrible errors in judgment.
The predominant factor (in how rapidly or slowly one progressed)
on the healing road was found in one’s intent! Intent was the
inclination of one’s soul to seek and accept nothing less than internal
self-honesty—the truth about oneself. Each searcher’s journey is his
personal awakening. His path is only as difficult as his pride is stubborn.
As I read the Bible, the words came alive in a more beautiful way.
My meditation kindled deeper insight, and I trusted my ability to read
between the lines, regardless of the Bible translation.