AVATAR AND THE EASTER MESSAGE
by Reja Janaki Joy Green*
[as it appeared in the April 2010 Newsletter]
“Avatar” is a movie that was written and directed by James Cameron and has earned more in sales than any other movie has ever earned in the history of movie making. It is a film depicting the clash of cultures: between an aboriginal society connected not only to one another but to all of nature as well, and a civilized culture disconnected and alienated from one another and nature and in desperate need of natural resources. As you can see, it’s actually an ancient scenario.
And yet, what if the conflict in James Cameron’s movie ‘AVATAR’ were one between the ego and the Son of God. In other words, a replay of the crucifixion which illustrates that the Son of God is not a body and cannot be destroyed AND, that the Son of God has only love and appreciation for everyONE, as taught in “A Course in Miracles”.
“The crucifixion was a complex of behaviors arising out of clearly opposed thought systems.
As such, it was the perfect symbol of conflict
between the ego and the Son of God.”
A Course in Miracles – original edition [CIMS] OrEd.Tx.6.23
What if Avatar were a ‘movie’ in which the ONE MIND is seemingly duped into accepting a thought system which believes in blame and punishment and condemnation. And the other part of the ONE MIND believes in what it IS, the Mind of God, which never condemns but instead demonstrates the Eternal Reality of the sinlessness of God’s Son.
“ANY concept of “punishment” involves the projection of blame
and REINFORCES the idea that blame is justified.
The behavior that results is a LESSON IN BLAME,
just as all behavior teaches the beliefs which motivate it.” OrEd.Tx.6.23
The Na’vi, in the current movie AVATAR, saw themselves as ‘separate’ and chose to PUNISH the Evil Ones who ‘attacked’ them, thus exercising their ‘projection of blame’. This behavior TEACHES that the belief in BLAME and PUNISHMENT and ATTACK is justified and that the separation is real. Their behavior teaches the belief in separation which motivates it.
And the Course in Miracles tells us the message of the crucifixion is:
“As the world judges these things, but NOT as God KNOWS them,
I was betrayed, abandoned, beaten, torn, and finally killed.
It was perfectly clear that this was only because of the projection of others
because I had not harmed anyone and had healed many.” OrEd.Tx.6.13
What if the Na’vi were motivated by the belief in their sinlessness and Oneness of the Sonship instead of seeing themselves as persecuted? If these beliefs were their motivation, what would be the response to the Evil Ones, who are equally sinless and therefore deserving of love and appreciation simply because they are not separate?
The Course in Miracles teaches that the only response to your brother should be one of ‘appreciation’ since a brother is either extending the Love that he IS or CALLING for LOVE and in each instance is deserving of only your appreciation. We appreciate the opportunity to share in the Love they are extending or we appreciate the opportunity to give the love that they are calling for. “With Love in you, you have no need but to extend it.”
“APPRECIATION!”, the world will echo. “Are you saying there should be appreciation for attacking the Na’vi; appreciation for slaughtering them along with their children and destroying their sacred home!?”
“You are free to perceive yourselves as persecuted if you choose.
You might remember, however, when you DO choose to react that way,
that I WAS persecuted as the world judges and did NOT share this evaluation for myself.
And because I did not share it, I did not STRENGTHEN it.
I therefore offered a DIFFERENT interpretation of attack and one which I DO want to share with you.
If you will BELIEVE it, you will help me to TEACH IT.” OrEd.Tx.6.8
“I elected both for your sake AND mine to demonstrate
that the most outrageous assault as judged by the ego did not matter.” OrEd.Tx.6.13
I remember, when mentioning to my twin sister, that we were so devastatingly disappointed by James Cameron’s choices as illustrated by the Na’vi, she asked me, “But what could they have done? How could they have responded any other way? Their sacred homes were going to be destroyed?”
She was talking about that pivotal moment in the movie. That moment when we all held our breath as Avatar Jake, now a true Na’vi, stood in front of the very connected and harmonious community and announced they would …………ATTACK!
It was the INSTANT in which the hope evaporated that somehow the ancient memory we all carry in our Souls of our Oneness would be made manifest, if not in our lives then perhaps on this celluloid projection screen.
Instead, what we saw presented was the idea, as if it were novel, of continuing down the same maze we’ve been going down since the beginning of time BUT this TIME, the cheese would magically be there; or would it? Was it?
What COULD they have done differently? There didn’t seem to be any other choice. The choice of condemnation, blame and punishment is all there is; or is it?
And so, we are presented with the opportunity to choose once again and this time to give the LOVE that is so obviously being called for and thus heal the separation. That’s what the Course in Miracles has to offer us. It offers us a SHIFT in perception, which is the MIRACLE. It’s a SHIFT out of the current mind-set of ‘US and THEM’ and back into our Right Minds and into our Oneness.
The one thing my husband and I have noticed as Course in Miracle students is our reluctance and increasing inability to see another brother as an ‘enemy’. Once you recognize the oneness of the Sonship, the concept is meaningless. Colonel Miles Quaritch, the main antagonist of the film, was appropriately stationed as the Chief of Security of Hell’s Gate on the planet Pandora. He was definitely evil personified but what joy could there be in his ‘suffering’ and death when you see him as yourSelf?
Let’s take a look at the ‘dramatic’ situation. What did the Evil Ones want? They wanted the very valuable ore called, oddly enough, UNOBTAINIUM, from the land of the Na’vi. That ‘material’ was important to the Evil Ones since it represented their PHYSICAL well being. It promised all the things that money could buy. And to get this ore, the Evil Ones had to destroy the sacred habitat of the Na’vi.
And what did the Na’vi cherish? Their Spirits connected so beautifully with the Spirits of the plants and animals and thus they lived almost as One. They chose, however, to build the ‘external’ to house the ‘ETERNAL’. They thought their Identity lay there and thus by thinking that the perishable were real, they were unable to release it.
What if the Na’vi demonstrated that they could NOT ‘BE’ ATTACKED as Jesus demonstrated on the Cross? What if they taught the belief that what is perishable and changeable is not REAL, as Jesus did?
They became ANGRY at the Evil Ones. But what if they knew that:
“Anger cannot occur unless you believe that you have been attacked,
that your attack was justified, and that you are in no way responsible.
Given these three wholly irrational premises,
the equally irrational conclusion
that a brother is worthy of attack rather than love follows.
What can be expected from insane premises except an insane conclusion?
‘The Way to undo an insane conclusion is to consider
the sanity of the premises on which it rests.
You cannot be attacked;
attack has no justification;
and you are responsible for what you believe.” OrEd.Tx.6.2
You cannot be attacked because of what you ARE. You are not your body. You are still as God created you, Eternal SOUL. That was the demonstration of the Crucifixion and the RESURRECTION.
“The real meaning of the Crucifixion lies in the APPARENT intensity of the assault
of some of the Sons of God upon another.
This of course is impossible and must be fully understood AS impossibility.” OrEd.Tx.6.6
“Assault can ultimately be made ONLY on the body.
There is little doubt that one BODY can assault another and can even destroy it.
Yet if destruction ITSELF is impossible, then anything that is destructible cannot be REAL.
Therefore its destruction does NOT justify anger.” OrEd.Tx.6.7
“If you respond with anger, you must be equating yourself with the destructible
and are therefore regarding yourself insanely.” OrEd.Tx.6.7
The Na’vi had the choice of equating themselves with the destructible body or with the indestructible Soul, just as we all do. What if their religion were based, not on the destructible, but only on what is REAL ~ The Holy Thoughts of God.
The experience of the Na’vi resonated so beautifully with us. It was as if we were remembering a time when there were that intimate connection with the Soul of everyOne and everyThing. When they were flying, our Souls were flying too, in sheer freedom and remembrance.
WHOLENESS was the belief of the Na’vi, and their lives demonstrated the connectedness of everything. That connectedness, however, stopped at the perimeter of their world. “..what you project you disown and therefore DO NOT BELIEVE IS YOURS.” The judgment is that something can be ‘other’ and also that it can be wrong.
“Projection will always hurt you.
It reinforces your belief in your own split mind,
and its only purpose is TO KEEP THE SEPARATION GOING.
It is solely a device of the ego to make you feel different from your brothers and separated from them.
The ego justifies this on the wholly spurious grounds that it makes you seem “better” than they are,
thus obscuring your equality with them still further.
Projection and attack are inevitably related
because projection is always a means of justifying attack.
Anger without projection is impossible.” OrEd.Tx.6.27
We make ourselves feel better than the Iraqi’s; better than the American Indian; better than the person of color; better than the Na’vi savages; AND better than the Evil Ones who are coming to take our ore. All belief in separation obscures our EQUALITY.
But there is HOPE.
“Every ability of the ego has a better counterpart
because its abilities are directed by the mind which has a better Voice.” OrEd.Tx.6.28
“The Holy Spirit begins by perceiving YOU as perfect.
KNOWING this perfection is shared,
He recognizes it in others, thus strengthening it in both.
Instead of anger, this arouses love for both BECAUSE IT ESTABLISHES INCLUSION.” OrEd.Tx.6.29
This kind of perceiving is the way HOME. To perceive with the Vision of the Holy Spirit brings us back to sanity and Reality. The challenge is to look on what we have projected, with the Vision of the Holy Spirit and see its perfection.
“The only REAL safety lies in projecting only the Holy Spirit because,
as you see His gentleness in others,
your OWN mind perceives ITSELF as totally harmless.
Once it can accept this fully, it does NOT see the need to PROTECT ITSELF.” OrEd.Tx.6.42
The Na’vi had a choice, as we all do. They could have ‘seen’ the Evil Ones as separate from themselves and with the ability to harm them or they could have ‘seen’ the Evil Ones as themSelves; simply the Son of God dreaming a dream of separation and deserving only of Love and appreciation and the healing that comes from right perception, which is forgiveness.
In their defenselessness, their safety lies. Truth needs no defense. What if the Na’vi truly knew where their Treasure lies? They would have no resistance to the Evil Ones. What if they knew that all their attack thoughts attack their invulnerability? What if they KNEW they were safe and could not be destroyed? They ARE Eternal Spirit. They are the Light of the World. They are still as God created them – and so are the Evil Ones!
Have you ever witnessed the miracle that comes when there is an attack and yet there is no defense? Attack gets its strength from the defense it engenders. Without that defense, it is impotent.
In the book, “Creating Miracles” written by Carolyn Miller, PhD, there are many examples of those who were in the face of imminent death, and yet, in that moment, they experienced a clarity and a peace and a sense of unconditional love and wholeness that encompassed everything, including the perpetrator. In that moment, they became ONE with the perpetrator. The would-be murderer knew that they had been forgiven and released of their guilt and in that Holy Instant they were transformed.
“The strength of right perception is so great
that it brings the mind INTO accord with His
because it yields to His pull which is in all of you.” OrEd.Tx.5.36
What if the most important TREASURE of the Na’vi were the RESURRECTION and not the ‘crucifixion’? That is, to see their brothers as sinless and deserving of unconditional love. What if they knew there is One Mind, they within it and it within them?
“The dispirited are depressed because they believe that they are literally “WITHOUT THE SPIRIT,”
which is an illusion. You do not PUT the Spirit in them by inspiring them
because that would be magic and therefore would not be real healing.
You DO, however, recognize the Spirit that is ALREADY there
and thereby REAWAKEN it.
This is why the healer is part of the resurrection and the LIFE.
The Spirit is not asleep in the minds of the sick,
but the part of the mind that can perceive it and be glad IS.” OrEd.Tx.7.31
The RESURRECTION then is not of the ‘body’, but the reawakening of the Spirit that is ALREADY THERE.
What if the result were a healing of the seeming separation and a return of Heaven on Earth? That could have been the choice of the Na’vi and that could be our choice as well.
Now it is left to us to leave the movie theater and dream our own movie. We are the writer and the director. What will our screenplay BE?
The choice is ours.
“Remember that the Holy Spirit is the communication link between God the Father and His separated Sons.
If you will listen to His Voice, you will know that you cannot either hurt or be hurt
and that many need your blessing to help them hear this for themselves.
When you perceive ONLY this need in them and do not respond to ANY other,
you will have learned of me and will be as eager to share your learning as I am.
The crucifixion CANNOT be shared because it is the symbol of projection,
but the resurrection is the symbol of SHARING
because the reawakening of every Son of God is necessary
to enable the Sonship to know its wholeness.
Only this is knowledge.
The message of the crucifixion is perfectly clear:
Teach ONLY love, for that is what you ARE.” OrEd.Tx.6.16-18
Rev Janaki Joy Green [RejaJoy] is one of the founding members of the Course in Miracles Society [CIMS]; She is the CIMS webmaster, has facilitated Course in Miracles study groups since 1983, is a Community Miracles Center minister, and is a RYT Certified Yoga instructor. Rev Reja Joy currently resides with her loving husband and Soul-mate, Chris Green, in Omaha, NE.
Course in Miracles Society (CIMS) is an international group of Course students and teachers organized to discover, authenticate and propagate the divine teachings of A Course in Miracles. As students, we seek to increase our knowledge of Jesus’ words and to deepen our experience of his teaching. As teachers, we work to circulate the message of A Course in Miracles throughout the world by our words, by our deeds and by the example of our lives. Jcim.net