As a young boy I was very much influenced by my mother's beliefs. She was an Irish Catholic with a very strong faith in her religion. My father was a Hindu but was more laid back about religion and in those early years I had no idea what he believed.
My mother was the one who taught me how to pray and every night kneeling by the side of the bed I would repeat the words of the prayers she recited. I had no idea what the words meant but it made her happy so I followed her lead. Right up into my early twenties I would go to bed saying my prayers in this manner and would feel very guilty if I neglected to do so.
As a child kneeling by the side of the bed with my sisters we would pray for people my mother asked to pray for. My mother told us that God listened to children so if I the child asks for something then it is more likely to come to pass. This then turned into a kind of competition between me and my sisters asking God for all the things we knew would make our mother happy. It is funny that many of the things we asked for her she actually got but none of it seemed to make her any happier.
Our prayers performed miracles which we simply accepted as normal and not in the least bit out of the ordinary. We believed our mother when she said that God only listens to children and maybe that is why I stopped praying when I became an adult and why I stopped believing in miracles. It would be many years later before I started praying again but in a completely different way and for miracles to become part of my life again.
letting Go Of Old Habits
I was introduced to the ritual of mass from a very early age and attended mass every Sunday right up until I left home and went to work in Japan.
Saying my prayers at night and going to church every Sunday was a habit I had learned and the habit was maintained out of a feelings of fear for what might happen if I didn't and the feeling of guilt I experienced when I didn't do these things was quite intense especially in the early years.
I prayed and went to church because I was afraid not to. The God my mother believed in and taught me to follow was a fearsome character who punished anyone who broke his commandments.
When I left home and started my new life in Japan that all changed but it didn't happen over night. I had to wean myself off an idea that was instilled into me from birth and it was as hard as letting go of anything I had taught myself to imagine I needed.
Always lurking in the background was the devil and growing up I was constantly reminded of this dark figure at home and at school. The devil was waiting for every opportunity to make me slip up and not going to mass on Sundays or not saying my prayers at night was an open invitation for the devil to come in and set up home in my soul or so I believed in those days.
It wasn't until I was twenty five years old that I was to be reunited with my father. My mother had left him when I was five and had brought me and my siblings to Ireland where we were raised and educated. The first three years of which I spent in an orphanage run by Catholic nuns.
I remember my very first religion class in that place and the nun in a heavy black habit drawing a large circle on the board with white chalk and colouring it in white. She then proceeded to tell a class of about forty or so six-year-old children that circle was our soul and that our soul was filled with grace which was represented by the white she had coloured it in. She then used a duster to rub out small areas of white and she told us that every time we committed a venial sin we would lose grace like this but could get it back by going to confession. Then with a very serious countenance she rubbed all of the white away and told us that when we committed a mortal sin we would lose all of our grace and that was a very serious state of affairs. The devil had an insatiable appetite for grace and it was our responsibility to protect our store of grace from the Lord of Darkness.
This was the start of an indoctrination that would last for all of my school days and reinforced in a home that strictly adhered the the principles I was taught at school.
I did, however, love the story of how Lucifer, the devil was once God's right-hand angel and how he fell from grace by competing with God for the title of commander-in chief of all the angels. I could imagine the great war that ensued and how Michael the archangel was finally victorious and the devil was banished to earth to feed on our souls. There were lots of inconsistencies in the story but I lapped it all up and longed to ask questions but to do so would be to imply that you did not believe and I was not going to risk the consequences. I kept quiet, listened to the stories and fantasised about fighting side by beside with Michael the archangel and all the angels of God.
Man of Miracles
It wasn't until I met my father again after being separated from him for twenty years things started to change in me. It wasn't that he commented or criticised any of my beliefs or habits it was more to do with the way he was that caused the tiny cracks to appear in a façade I had created to please my family and to fit in with a society that nurtured fear as a way to God.
Before I left him to return to my work in Japan he gave me three books. One of these books was called . Years would pass by before I would read this book but when I did my life would never be the same again. The book introduced me to Love as a way to God and that is the path I walk to this day twenty seven years on. Man of Miracles by Howard Murphet
I was first attracted to the message in the book by the miracles described. I remembered how as a boy I had loved hearing the stories of Jesus performing miracles and my heart skipped a beat when I discovered that there was a man living in India performing the same kind of miracles. My mind and my heart were filled to bursting with excitement and I wanted to share the news with everyone. I was not expecting the reaction I received when I called my mother and announced that God was alive and well in India. Her reaction was the same as the one had used time an again as I was growing up to throw wet blanket over anything she disapproved of and that also included my choice of friends and girlfriends. I learned a valuable lesson that day and realised that everyone was on their own journey and once you stepped off the path that others followed you would become an outcast and seen in many circles as weird or even insane. Imagine what people in Nazareth must have thought when they heard news that people were calling the lad they knew as Jesus a Messiah?
The miracles described in the book and verified by many are very impressive and it wasn't until much later that I realised why these very special people have to perform miracles at all. The reason is that their message is so mundane and not in the least bit inspiring to minds trapped in a world that kept their minds hostage. The world of illusion is hypnotic and so completely engages the mind that anything outside of the illusion is not noticed without some kind of sensationalism. Sai Baba, the man the book is about, calls his miracles his calling cards.
A Course in Miracles
Over the years my own thinking with regard to miracles has changed and developed in ways that I would not have imagined. Reading and practising the exercises in has further developed my thinking and I have summarised what the text in the book A Course in Miracles says about miracles so you can see and perhaps entertain a new way of looking at miracles as not just a kind of magic trick but a way to wake people from the dream they call life. A Course in Miracles
"A miracle is a device to enable you to correct perception and is actually the only device at our disposal to control time."
If you believe that what you cannot see doesn't exist then this will lead to you denying your spiritual insight.
Anything that helps you deny body-identification and affirm spirit-identification is a healing experience.
Sanity can only be restored when your mind is released from the imprisonment of your illusions.
A healer temporarily has more for those who temporarily have less. By supplying the lack healing occurs.
A miracle is an expression of love, an example of right thinking, a correction introduced into false thinking by the Holy Spirit.
Because the Holy Spirit recognises and can discern between God's creations and your illusions it is the Holy Spirit who is the mechanism of miracles.
As you perceive light, darkness disappears. In the same way as light dissolves darkness the Holy Spirit dissolves error through miracles.
Lack is a false perception and you are released from your false perception of lack through the mechanism of miracles.
Miracles are temporary communication devices that arise when the mind is ready. Miracles are no longer necessary when we return to our original communication with God through direct revelation.
Man of Miracles
In this video from YouTube you can hear Sri Sathya Sai Baba's words about miracles.