When I read Step 41 of Steps to Knowledge (“I am not afraid of the power of God.”), I recall various sections of A Course in Miracles. I think this step recapitulates significant chunks. In order to get Eve to eat the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, the serpent had to make the suggestion, unsupported by any of Eve’s experience, that God didn’t really have her best interests at heart. Someone, somewhere, suggested to the Prodigal Son that his father didn’t have his best interests at heart. Here’s how the step describes it;
“It is painful to be separated from that which you love beyond all things, and the only way to maintain this separation is to malign that which you love, to give it an evil intent and then to engender guilt within yourself.”
People tend to get invested in their choices. Fearing their choices are weak, they engage in various activities and relationships to fortify their choices. Even when people are persuaded that a previous choice was an error, it takes a certain amount of time and effort to divest one’s self of the series of investments and fortifications related to that choice. The price for separation is living in a twisted, confused, upside-down world. Eve had to curse all the happy moments in the garden. The Prodigal Son had to malign the kindnesses of his father.
It’s going to take some work to walk this back.
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