[acimlessons_list] Lesson 64 - March 5
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Fri Mar 4 07:27:59 EST 2005
+ COMMENTARIES ON LESSONS FROM THE WORKBOOK OF A COURSE IN MIRACLES
+ by Allen Watson, with Practice Summaries by Robert Perry,
+ of The Circle of Atonement
+ Visit our website at <http://www.circleofa.com <http://www.circleofa.com/>
Lesson 64 - March 5
"Let me not forget my function."
Purpose: to remind yourself to constantly choose your happiness by choosing
to fulfill your function. To resist the temptation to let the world you see
lull you into forgetting your function.
Longer: at least 1, for 10-15 minutes
* Close your eyes and repeat these thoughts: "Let me not forget my
function. Let me not try to substitute mine for God's. Let me forgive and be
* Then again do the recent practice of reflecting on these statements.
Think about them. Let related thoughts come (it will help if you remember
how important your function is to you and others).
Remarks: It is easy for lengthy reflection like this to turn into a big mind
wandering-fest, for the simple reason that "you are not proficient in the
mind discipline that it requires" (7:2). So be on the lookout for irrelevant
thoughts. When they come, repeat the idea (you might even want to repeat all
three statements). Even if you have to do so twenty times, that is better
than just letting your mind float off into never-never land.
Frequent reminders: frequently, for several minutes
At different times, use one or the other of the following:
1. A shorter version of the longer practice. Repeat the three "let me"
statements and then think only about them. Your mind will wander; when it
does, repeat the idea to bring it back.
2. Repeat the same statements, then look slowly and unselectively about
you, saying: "This is the world it is my function to save."
Lesson 62 told me that forgiveness is my function; so this lesson expresses
a determination not to forget what I am here for: To forgive the world,
bringing peace to every mind.
What causes me to forget? The entire world. Everything my body's eyes see is
"a form of temptation, since this was the purpose of the body itself" (2:1).
The ego made the world and the body with a certain purpose in mind:
1) To obscure my function of forgiveness 2) To justify my forgetting my
function 3) To entice me to abandon God and His Son by taking form in a
The ego's continuation depends on my identifying with a bodily form. The
"wickedness" and "incompletion" of the world around me justify my
unwillingness to forgive. My involvement in the world, making it the scope
of my goals and even my life, obscures my true function (in Heaven,
creating; here, forgiving). The ego's plan seems to have worked pretty well.
The Course's cosmology is fairly unique and extreme. As it says later in the
Workbook, the Course's teaching is that "The world was made as an attack on
God" (W-pII.3.2:1). It was not created by God but made by the ego to abandon
God, taking on physical form to obscure our spiritual reality.
If it seems difficult for me to accept this understanding, I am not alone.
The Course is quite aware this is a difficult concept. But when I begin to
detect the way my mind works, it becomes a little easier to accept. Because
I begin to notice ways in which my mind uses the world, and uses everything
I see with my eyes, to maintain the illusion of separation. As I am moved to
forgive, I also find something in my mind resisting with tooth and nail,
trying to justify withholding forgiveness, trying to get me simply to forget
forgiveness entirely. And I begin to recognize that what the Course is
saying here bears a curious similarity to what is going on within my mind.
Perhaps what it is saying, then, expresses truth, a truth I am perhaps
reluctant to accept, but which seems to be borne out by my own experience.
The Holy Spirit has another purpose, however, for everything in the world.
"To the Holy Spirit, the world is a place where you learn to forgive
yourself what you think of as your sins" (2:3). That's what we're doing as
we forgive "others." Fulfilling this function is what brings us happiness (I
can testify to that!).
The connection between forgiveness and happiness is interesting. If you
think about it for a moment, you'll realize that when you are unforgiving,
you are unhappy about something. To say, "I'm not happy about the way you
are acting in our relationship," for instance, is equivalent to saying, "I
have judged you and found you wanting; I am unforgiving." To forgive someone
is to be happy with them. To forgive means to let go of your justification
for being unhappy. When you forgive, "happiness becomes inevitable" (4:2).
And, "There is no other way" (4:3). Unforgiveness is precisely a choice to
remain unhappy; without forgiveness you cannot be truly happy. That is the
reasoning behind this statement: "Therefore, every time you choose whether
or not to fulfill your function [that is, to forgive], you are relaly
choosing whether or not to be happy" (4:4).
The lesson then goes on to point out that every single decision we make in a
day can all be boiled down to this simple choice: Will I be happy, or
unhappy? When you can begin to view your choices in life from this
perspective, the choice becomes no choice at all. Who would knowingly choose
unhappiness? When you begin to notice yourself actually doing that, you
begin to understand why the Course refers to us so often as "insane."
"Let me not forget my function. Let me not try to substitute mine for God's.
Let me forgive and be happy."
Let's try to remember to do the actual practice today (I have to confess,
I've been skimping on the practice). One thing to notice is the ten to
fifteen minute practice period that is called for today; that's something
new. If nothing else, try to fit that one in.
+ Commentary by Allen Watson
+ Practice Summary: Robert Perry
+ Available in book format from The Circle
+ of Atonement (Vol. 1 reprint due by end of 2004, write us for info)
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