[acimlessons_list] Lesson 11 - January 11
sue at circleofa.org
Tue Jan 10 06:41:45 EST 2012
Lesson 11 - January 11
"My meaningless thoughts are showing me a meaningless world."
Purpose: to reverse how you see cause and effect in your perception. You
think that the outside world imprints itself on your mind, causing your
perceptions, yet causation travels the other way: from the inside out. What
you see outside you is the projection of your thoughts. This is the first
lesson that deals with this major Workbook theme.
Exercise: 3 times (4 or 5 if you find that comfortable and desirable), for 1
minute or so
* With eyes closed repeat the idea slowly and casually, to
reflect the peace and relaxation contained in the idea.
* Then open your eyes and look about, up and down, near and
fear, letting your eyes move rapidly from one thing to another. During this
time repeat the idea leisurely and effortlessly.
* To conclude, close your eyes and repeat the idea slowly.
Remarks: Unlike most of the previous exercises, in this one you do not apply
the idea specifically to the objects around you, naming them as you do. In
fact, the repeating of the idea is not synchronized with the shifting of
your glance. The two happen at different paces. The relative rapidity with
which you look around is contrasted with the slowness with which you repeat
The lesson introduces "the concept that your thoughts determine the world
you see." This is a major theme in the Course. It is the reason for the
famous line, "Seek not to change the world, but choose to change your mind
about the world." The mind is primary and the world secondary. Our tendency
is to believe that the world causes (or at least affects) how we think; the
Course teaches that mind is the cause, and the world, effect.
The idea, we are told, "contains the foundation for the peace, relaxation
and freedom from worry we are trying to achieve." "...in this idea is your
release made sure. The key to forgiveness lies in it." Why is that? If what
we see outside, the meaningless world, is being caused by my own meaningless
thoughts, then there is nothing to "blame" in the outside world; all that is
needed is to correct my thoughts. I can forgive what I see <because> it is
meaningless. I condemn and judge only when I think I see something that
means something, something bad or evil or terrible. But if it is meaningless
there is no ground for condemnation. And if my mind is at cause of what I
see, then how can I judge it? All I can do is recognize that, as the Text
says, "I am responsible for what I see" (T-21.II.2:3) and choose to change
my own mind.
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