I awoke this morning trapped in illusion, so today’s ACIM lesson is exactly what I need: Lesson 325 All things I think I see reflect ideas. I have to remind myself that I do not know what anything is for. I must remind myself that “Some of your greatest advances you have judged as failures, and some of your deepest retreats you have evaluated as success.” I must consciously remember that “If you did not feel guilty you could not attack, for condemnation is the root of attack.”
Just another opportunity for forgiveness.
So, on this day when I find that it is necessary to forgive myself for all the many things I feel I “should” have done but haven’t, I let it go. I ask the Holy Spirit to help me. I will step back and let Him lead the way. From last year’s writing:
You can’t be part of A Course in Miracles study group without having a lot of discussions about the nature of reality and perception. The hard thing for most of us is that we look out, see a fucked-up world and think that it is the world that needs to change. And although it is popular to say things like, “change your thinking, change your life,” most of us limit that belief to thinking we can change our personal experiences by having a better attitude. The idea that we can change the world seems remote. Can I change who the presidential candidates for the 2016 election are after the vote has been cast? See; this is where debates about the practicality of the Course arise. Yet, the Course is imminently practical, for nothing could be more practical than choosing love over fear and that is what the Course teaches us to do. (The rest is all illusion, a.k.a the “dream.”)
Today’s lesson expands upon the idea first encounter way back on day two of the daily lessons: I have given everything I see in this room [on this street, from this window, in this place] all the meaning that it has for me. Our perceptions create our reality. Invariably the argument is “well, what about people that get murdered or attacked or somehow or another experience violence that they didn’t ask for?”
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but they did. Not consciously, of course, but life is vibration and like finds like. Today’s lesson gives a precise description of how exactly we create our own realities. We see the world not as it is but as we are.
All things I think I see reflect ideas.
This is salvation’s keynote: What I see reflects a process in my mind, which starts with my idea of what I want. From there, the mind makes up an image of the thing the mind desires, judges valuable, and therefore seeks to find. These images are then projected outward, looked upon, esteemed as real and guarded as one’s own. From insane wishes comes an insane world. From judgment comes a world condemned. And from forgiving thoughts a gentle world comes forth, with mercy for the holy Son of God, to offer him a kindly home where he can rest a while before he journeys on, and help his brothers walk ahead with him, and find the way to Heaven and to God.
Our Father, Your ideas reflect the truth, and mine apart from Yours but make up dreams. Let me behold what only Yours reflect, for Yours and Yours alone establish truth.
© Foundation for Inner Peace • PO Box 598 • Mill Valley, CA 94942-0598
“What I see reflects a process in my mind, which starts with my idea of what I want.” I know for myself personally, when I see something I don’t like (my husband being whisked off to the hospital, my friend having eye surgery, my bank account looking too empty for my personal preferences; and don’t get me started on the state of the environment, healthcare, the politicians), I have a hard time conceiving of that being a process that started in my mind as an idea of what I want. But what I can recognize is that some of it is a backdoor way of giving me my heart’s desire. My husband’s hospital trip was what forced him to start caring for himself, my dwindling bank account is what makes me hustle. I often (usually maybe even) have a covert agenda that is getting satisfied in some twisted way by whatever is happening. I get to continue the illusion of separation, of an individual identity, of judge and jury for what I think should be happening.
Part of me is still a little terrified to let go of ego because it is convinced that in doing so, I will lose my individuality and I won’t be “me” anymore.
The crazy part is why, oh why (an ego question, I know), do I cling to any ideas that can’t bring peace?
We began our reading last Tuesday with The Guiltless World, which begins with these words: “1 If you did not feel guilty you could not attack, for condemnation is the root of attack. It is the judgment of one mind by another as unworthy of love and deserving of punishment. But herein lies the split. For the mind that judges perceives itself as separate from the mind being judged, believing that by punishing another, it will escape punishment. All this is but the delusional attempt of the mind to deny itself, and escape the penalty of denial. It is not an attempt to relinquish denial, but to hold on to it. For it is guilt that has obscured the Father to you, and it is guilt that has driven you insane.”
It is easy to see the insanity of the ego thought system by merely posing the question how can I kill my ego (which in case you haven’t been paying attention is a desire among many folks on a spiritual path)? Ego is the trouble-maker – let’s eliminate the bastard! But, if there are only two thought systems, Love and fear, the Holy Spirit and the ego, who is having the thought, “I want to kill ego?” Surely not Love/God which is incapable of attack, so it must be fear/ego which is the same as saying it wants to kill itself. So who will do the killing and who is then left?
“Do you really believe you can kill the Son of God?” asks the Course.
1 Do you really believe that you can kill the Son of God? The Father has hidden His Son safely within Himself, and kept him far away from your destructive thoughts, but you know neither the Father nor the Son because of them. You attack the real world every day and every hour and minute, and yet you are surprised that you cannot see it. If you seek love in order to attack it, you will never find it. For if love is sharing, how can you find it except through itself? Offer it and it will come to you, because it is drawn to itself. But offer attack and love will remain hidden, for it can live only in peace. (T.12.VIII.1)
If we project to get rid of guilt, but feel guilty because of attack (“without guilt attack is impossible”), then clearly the way out of the labyrinth is via forgiveness. Only the love is real. Forgiveness is the acceptance that what we have condemned never really happened. All things I think I see reflect ideas. “Think I see.” If I am not seeing with Christ’s Vision, I am not really seeing at all. (“I am upset because I see something that is not there.”)
[These lessons really are the key to learning the Course.]
We see the world not as it is but as we are: it is a reflection of what we value. And so, we pray; we surrender to God’s will knowing that despite what ego tells us that we really do desire to have a world of peace and love. “Our Father, Your ideas reflect the truth, and mine apart from Yours but make up dreams. Let me behold what only Yours reflect, for Yours and Yours alone establish truth.”
We pray to wake up from the dream: to be Teachers for God, to be vigilant for God and His Kingdom; to teach only love. “You can deny it, but you cannot lose it.” There is nothing any of us can do to make the separation real. The game is rigged.
“8 The real world was given you by God in loving exchange for the world you made and the world you see. Only take it from the hand of Christ and look upon it. Its reality will make everything else invisible, for beholding it is total perception. And as you look upon it you will remember that it was always so.”
“It is a required course. Only the time you take it is voluntary.” How long do you want to remain in hell? Heaven is waiting. “It was always so.”
Namaste, my friends, Namaste.
- Here Comes (U.S.) Thanksgiving: The Unbreakable Link between Gratitude and Joy (challies.com)
- Time for God’s favour (vanguardngr.com)
- 10 Insane Facts About The Craziest Election In US History (listverse.com)
- Sacred Mysteries: the return of the dew that we hardly knew we’d lost (telegraph.co.uk)
- No, Half of America Didn’t Just Lose Their F*cking Minds, They Were Intentionally Driven Insane. (disinfo.com)
- Hearing God – Sunday Thought For The Day (mychal-massie.com)