A Course in Miracles: Lesson 22

Lesson 22

What I see is a form of vengeance.  

I was sitting once in meditation and experienced one of those revelation moments.  Albeit not trying for it, as it goes, it just happened.  I was sitting on the cushion and as I was observing the sensations of my body, I noticed I was wincing a lot and it was causing my whole body to jolt.  I felt this mostly on my face, around my cheeks, and on my abdomen.  It was like these small pebbles where being thrown at these areas.  At first it was happening every so often but then the speed picked up with rapidity.  Jolt after jolt, my body kept jumping.  Then, all the sudden I was hit by lighting.  It was a bolt of clarity.  I had been the one throwing stones at me.  But it was actually more than just stones, they were punches.

It was so subtle.  I was having these attacking thoughts about myself which actually felt like little punches across my face and abdomen.  These thoughts were so normal in my head, I didn’t recognize that I was literally fighting myself, well not really physically, but more so emotionally.  Each jolt was my body bracing for the incoming blow, my negative thought.  Of course, I was bracing because my thoughts were creating a piercing energy that was coming in as blows to my energetic field and rippling to my body.  I opened my eyes and saw with perfect vision that no one was around me yet I was just in battle.  My Sacred Sight showed me that I am my biggest bully.  I spend most of my time protecting myself from the world but it is I who is the culprit.  And if my thoughts are always attacking me, of course, I believe the world to be doing the same.  I believe therefore I see, remember?

Today’s lesson will be presented a few more times in poetic ways throughout the Course.  Each similar statement we step more into our honesty that we are, more or less, always bracing ourselves against attack.  We know the world will let us down, leave us vulnerable, high, and dry, and won’t protect us, and never love us the way we need to be loved in just the moment we need it.  Although we like to say we trust various people and things in the world but do we really?  Aren’t we always expecting to be let down?

How can we put so much trust in that which is not real?  In that which is a dream to be awakened from?  Of course, everything outside of us will fail and go away, leaving empty promises, because it was never meant to be eternal.  The only thing that is eternal is that which is real.  One of the first statements in our introduction, which is also covered in the beginning of the Course, is,

“Nothing real can be threatened.

Nothing unreal exists.

Herein lies the peace of God (ACIM Preface x).”  

Today we realize that we are living in a state of threat.  We see a world around us that is threatened.  And thus, we act as such in order to prevent an attack.  But the good news is that we come closer to experiencing the Truth which leaves a lasting mark, enabling you to let down your guard and see beyond that which is perishable.  This also means letting down your guard on certain roles or ideas you have about yourself, your life, and that of others.  Look at nature, does Spring brace for Summer?  Does Summer brace for Fall?  And Fall for Winter?  Each season lets go and flows on and on in peace knowing that there is no harm in the leaving blooming, withering, and falling away.  It trust in the eternal process.  Have you ever seen such a peaceful transition? I believe it is Eckhart Tolle who says that “Nature is one of our greatest teachers.”  Amen!

What a joyous day it is to know that you cannot be harmed.  That what you think to harm you, are only attacking thoughts.  But if you open your eyes to Sacred Sight you will see that there is nothing there at all, only punches in the wind.

“Is it not joyous news to hear that it is not real?  Is it not a happy discovery to find that you can escape?  You made what you would destroy; everything that you hate and would attack and kill.  All that you fear does not exist (ACIM Lesson 22 2:2-5).”

I recall the relief I felt having that experience on the meditation cushion.  I had heard before that I was my biggest bully but not until I felt the jolt of each demeaning thought of myself did I realize the war I was raging was the one against my beautiful, loving self.  My innocence softened in that moment as she knew there was no need to shield herself or hide from anything.  I also apologized to my innocence then and there.  I recognized that although I said I loved myself, I had not been acting that way on every level.  I was the abuser and the abused and it was time to put one of those down.

If we live our life in constant self-defense mode, how can anyone love us with our dukes up, ready for battle?  Today in our practice periods we look upon a world that truly is not attacking us but merely appears so because we are the ones armed and ready.  Therefore, life must appear to respond as such.  It’s like hearing a noise in your home and arming yourself for the intruder, to find out it is just your roommate, scaring you both to death with your battle shield ready.  As much as we like to point the finger and play the blame game, it is just not so.  This is not to say that there are not atrocities going on out in the world that do not need to be dealt with.  Again, what we are talking about is the inner revolution that will help us face such atrocities and connect us more to the knowing of how to move through such events with more love and less fear.

We end today’s lesson by asking ourselves,

“Is this the world I really want to see (ACIM Lesson 22 3:8)?”

I love this question because, of course, the answer is no.  Yet, I have to add a quote that my sister always told me as she took my little arms when I was younger and started hitting me with them, as she pinned me down, “Why do you keep hitting yourself?  Why do you keep hitting yourself?”  Ten years younger than my sister, it didn’t seem funny to me.  I just wanted her to leave me alone and stop making me hit myself.  But to her it was hilarious.  And after today’s lesson there is a bit of humor in, “why do we keep hitting ourselves with attacking thoughts?”

Put down the gloves, put down the knives and pitch fork, loosen your grip on the battle….it is only you.  And all you are asking for is Your Own Love.  Will you finally give it to yourself today?  If this is all a dream, go past the happy dream, to the end of the dream.  Wake up.  You are here.

Namaste.

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