I see only the past and I can relax now, knowing that all I need to do while I seem to be in this world is to listen to the Holy Spirit and follow His guidance. I don’t have to strive for anything or to set any goals, because I see only the past. I don’t have to think about what to do in the future, because I see only the past. I have no control over the world I made, and never did, because I see only the past. “This world was over long ago” (T-28.I.1:6) and I rest in this Holy Instant, now. “I see only the past. This idea will be very important in our awakening, because this idea must be first acknowledged before an experience can come that is beyond it. This idea is so important that the first six Lessons of the Workbook are all based on it. You might say it is a very fundamental step on the seeming ladder of awakening. There will be ideas that will come along that may seem very radical like, “the script is written”, an idea that seems very perplexing to students of this Course, but actually, is just another form of this lesson number 7, “I see only the past.” So, when we say “I see”, it means “I perceive.” I perceive a world of images, a world of sequenced images that seem to come one after another in what seems to be called daily life, in what seems to be a linear cosmos, moving from past to future in that direction, and yet all that, all those perceptions are based on the past. The meanings that are seen, experienced, are based solely on the past. If everything I perceive is the past, it can show at once how delusional are the thoughts and images that pass the mind. I say delusional, because if you think of this in terms of making a series of choices that all seem to be different throughout the day, choosing this over that, choosing to stay or to go, preferring one thing over the next, watching your eyes be drawn to one thing instead of another thing, planning the day, having a schedule, following a calendar, you are presuming that there is something going on other than the past. There seems to be something actively present and actively unfolding in the direction of the future. Presumptions of seemingly different locations in time and space, different increments of time, some much shorter and tinier, some much, much longer, all rest on the belief that this world is somehow dynamic and unfolding.”
Time and Space
ACIM Meditation – I am upset because I see something that is not there. Nothing of this world resembles reality because the ego made up the world and the ego knows not of God. The ego is a hallucination and is only capable of making more hallucinations. That is why you cannot expect this world to tell you who you are. You can only be supremely happy if you know who you are and the Holy Spirit is the means to do so. The Holy Spirit is the bridge given us to escape from time and enter into eternity. Sink deep and allow this ACIM meditation to strengthen your connection with the Holy Spirit. “Today’s Workbook Lesson is giving us the chance to unpin, to unwind from the belief in being trapped in appearances. When our very identity of love of the living Christ, a perfect idea in the Mind of God, has been forgotten and completely pushed out of awareness, appearances seem to have come to take the place of love and light. This condition could be called hallucination. It is like when a thirsty traveler walking through a desert, feeling scorched, hot, parched and dry may hallucinate an oasis of shade and water. The sleeping Son of God has believed himself to be bereft of his holy Father, his creator. He finds himself lost and wandering in a desert of images, a desert of perception that God did not create: a fantasy world, a fictitious, linear stream of images that have nothing to do with reality, nothing to do with eternity, divine love and happiness. And so, the first step in healing from this apparent condition of separation is to realize that all upsets experienced are coming from a perception which is not there.”
These thoughts do not mean anything. Today we begin a practice of meditation. The workbook lessons are guiding us, helping us to train our minds to meditate. And the first three lessons are: “Nothing I see means anything,” “I have given everything I see all the meaning it has for me,” and “I do not understand anything I see.” These first three lessons are the very beginning of letting go of all meaning of what is perceived, all meaning of the linear perceived world of time and space. It’s like the first three lessons are opening the lid of a can, and then, as we peel that lid off, we are told these thoughts do not mean anything. So today’s lesson is the first lesson from Jesus that is addressing thoughts. The first three lessons’ addressed perception, and now, lesson number four addresses directly the thoughts of a sleeping mind. So, we now make the attempt to stop, and watch, and sink within toward “Be still and know that I am God”, toward the truth of our being. Move away from the temporary, the ephemeral, the fleeting, and inward towards certainty. Focus on this idea for today, “These thoughts do not mean anything.”
The plan is always now and the plan is forgiveness. When we focus our attention on this single purpose, anything is possible. The Course teaches that in this illusion of time and space, there is only one tool that will lead us to salvation, and that is forgiveness. This in turn leads to the Holy Instant.
Part of the spiritual journey is to heal the beliefs in sickness, pain and death. These beliefs can feel very ingrained to a mind that’s identified with the body. It can seem frightening to take a closer look at these thoughts when we’d rather avoid them. When faced with thoughts of death it can seem intensely fearful, our instant reaction can be to distract away from the fear, but these can be used as mind expanding experiences. In handing all of our thoughts over around sickness and death we can let the Holy Spirit interpret and heal our perception around these beliefs to free our mind from suffering.
Jesus will guide us so our journey is smooth and joyful. We only feel pain and sacrifice when we resist. Plan Bs are resistance, used to support the self-concept rather than the Christ Self. Yet the Holy Spirit and Jesus show us that trust is justified. Are we willing to trust so much that we let go of our plan Bs? Our problem is that first we decide what we want, and then we ask for guidance. The asking needs to come first. When we are identified with a self-concept we don’t know our best interests; we are completely lost and need the help of the Holy Spirit. Thankfully, that help is available to us anytime we ask for it
David Hoffmeister shares an experience he had while practicing A Course in Miracles workbook lesson 163, “There is no death. The Son of God is free.” He had the experience that there truly is no death and that death is the ego. A woman in front of David had collapsed on the ground and stopped breathing in the grocery store he was in while practicing the ACIM lesson. When David had the experience that there truly is no death, the women seemed to be a reflection of mind and simultaneously began breathing again. What does Jesus mean by, “There is no death. The Son of God is free”? He’s really saying, “There is no ego. The Son of God is free.”
Be free from any feeling of pressure to succeed. You were taught that success is acquiring something that you didn’t have, but that has value. Yet the more you question beliefs, the more you see that you are what is valuable. And in order to know what you truly are you need to forget what you have been taught. You do not have to make anything of yourself, as you may have been told to do as a kid. You do not have to be productive, or believe that you are going forward in time. You’ve been tricked to think that you are a body moving forward in time towards death.
You don’t even know what you truly fear because it is so pushed out of awareness that, if you were aware of it, you would not be able to hold on to a personal identity that is separate from this truth. Yet, whether you take this leap now or actively choose not to, makes no difference to the inevitable. It stays shining just like the sun, no matter where it is. The end of fear is always waiting for you. But you can choose to delay it if you want to stay in a fearful thought system. The change of mind that you are asked to make is from fear to love.
You have what seem to be mounds of memories of past situations. You try to use these memory fragments to gain understanding. For example, if you have a conversation with a family member that you find upsetting, you might think back on it later and wonder: What was going on there? Why did I feel so upset? When you use this kind of situational thinking to try to understand a feeling, you are using the ego’s framework of linear time. Through the ACIM daily lessons you are trained to remember that time is already over. You do not have to believe that one thing happens after another in your experience. There is a different way to experience being.