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October 11, 2015 Blog A Course in Miracles: Lesson 284
October 11, 2015 Blog
A Course in Miracles: Lesson 284
“I can elect to change all thoughts that hurt.”
I’m going to quote directly from the Workbook on this lesson and then I want to say what it means and what it doesn’t mean for me. What it doesn’t mean is as important as what it does.
“Loss is not loss when properly perceived. Pain is impossible. There is no grief with any cause at all. And suffering of any kind is nothing but a dream. This is the truth, at first to be but said and then repeated many times; and next to be accepted as but partly true; with many reservations. Then to be considered seriously more and more, and finally accepted as truth.”
What does this lesson mean? It is first a recognition that I am eternal, and being so nothing ever passes truly from my self. All loss is a temporary perception, seen from a limited viewpoint. Nothing is taken from us forever and nothing can truly hurt me. Second, the lesson recognizes I learn in stages. And I must forgive myself for taking the time to learn. All experiences are lessons God would have me learn and it is my choice when to learn them. If I choose not to accept the lesson now, it will be offered to me again later. All of this is done with Love. All of this is done in Love.
What this lesson does not mean is that I should tell a loved one her pain is not real. Nor should I offer myself false comfort by burying my own. If my child falls down and scrapes her knee, it would a callous thing to tell her, “Sweetie, the pain is in your mind. It isn’t real.” If my sister loses her farm to bankruptcy it would be cruel to counsel her with, “This was your attraction. I wonder what you are meant to learn from this?” If I suffer the loss of my dearest friend, it would be a disservice to myself to use the lessons of A Course as platitude and truism in order to avoid my own grief and anger. “I know I’ll miss Martha, but she isn’t really gone. I should carry on and get over it. “
There is nothing in A Course in Miracles that asks us to deny our feelings. There is nothing in A Course in Miracles that suggests we should deny the feelings of others. In fact, the opposite it true. All feelings and all thoughts must be brought to light and treated with kindness and compassion. The decision to change all thoughts that hurt requires me to know what those thoughts are – not bury them in false progress and call myself spiritual.
“I can elect to change all thoughts that hurt.” What are those thoughts? Is there someone you can share them with? We are not meant to walk the path alone. A friend who will listen lovingly as you bring your pain to light is a true gift. Bring the hurt to the light and let it be treated with compassion – whether it is hurt you have inflicted on another, or a pain you are inflicting upon yourself. In the end, it’s all the same. Who will listen to you today? Who will you listen for?