[Please note: ACIM passages quoted in this article reference the Foundation for Inner Peace (FIP) Edition.]
Thanks to Robert, I have found an incredibly powerful new practice tool! Since I have started using it, it has revolutionalized my practicing, taking me to much deeper depths than ever before. This tool has greatly enriched every one of my practice periods every day. It is so helpful that I have decided to make it part of each and every day’s practice.
So what is this wonder tool? Well, by now you will have read about it in Robert’s latest newsletter article, “These Words Dispel the Night.” It’s a process of repeating the idea for the day over and over in several different ways. That doesn’t sound too exciting, does it? Well, don’t be fooled; this process is dynamite! Practiced regularly, it’s guaranteed to lift you up and move you to a different place in your practicing.
Robert has drawn together in one place all the different instructions the Course makes about repeating the words. In these comments there is a wealth of guidance on how to say the words in order to “see the gifts that they contain for you” (rIV.8:2) and receive maximum benefit from them. Practiced together, these instructions have so much more power than they do individually.
In my morning quiet time, I repeat the idea as a way of setting it as my goal for the day. Then I take time to say it in all the other ways listed in the article. By the time I am finished, I am already in a peaceful quasi-meditative state, and it’s easy to slip from there into a full meditation and an even deeper experience of peace.
In every hourly practice, I repeat the idea using a few of the different instructions each time. By the end of my practice day, I have used all of them. When I pause for a frequent reminder, I repeat the idea in whatever way comes to mind. When I use it as a response to temptation, I usually focus on the sense of liberation contained in the idea and remind myself that I can choose to let go of my upset. Then I usually add, “I will forgive and see this differently. I will forgive and this upset will disappear” (from Lesson 193).
I also move into my evening quiet time by repeating the idea for the day in at least many–if not all–of the ways, and it again takes me right into my meditation. As I go to bed, I thank God for all the blessings that have come to me through my frequent repetition of the words of the lesson, and I take the idea into my sleep.
Here are a few examples of how I used the process with Lesson 247, “Without forgiveness, I will still be blind.”
Repeating the idea slowly, several times, with my eyes closed: Just by doing this, I felt myself sinking into the idea, letting it sweep over and into me.
Thinking of the meaning of the words; trying to understand them: “I am still blind. I am actually blind. And I am blind because I refuse to forgive.”
Letting related thoughts come: “I think I know what I see, but I don’t. Just like a blind person, I can’t see anything with this body’s eyes. I close my eyes to what is really there and see what is not there! I judge people, find fault with them, decide I know what their words or actions mean. I see them as faulty; I see them as sinful and guilty of this or that. Just like a blind person without a guide, I grope around in the dark, trying to find my way, and yet I still insist on keeping my eyes closed to the way.”
Acknowledging the truth of these words and seeing them as a declaration of my release: ‘”I am responsible for what I see’ (T-21.II.2:3)! The choice to see is entirely up to me. These words will free me from darkness, from all the pain and suffering that comes from not forgiving, from not seeing my brothers as they really are.”
Talking myself into the idea: “I am blind by choice. I can continue stumbling around in the dark, or I can open my eyes and see! I don’t want to be blind. I want to see. I want to see what is lovely and holy and pure; so, I must forgive. Nothing else can free me and bring me the peace I want.”
Repeating it gladly: “I am so glad and grateful for this lesson, and for Jesus who gave it to me as a sign of his love for me and his desire for my awakening. I am glad to be saying these words, knowing that they will hasten that moment of awakening.”
Offering it to God as a prayer, and feeling confident that He will answer me: “Dearest God, I don’t want to continue suffering from this self-inflicted blindness. I want to see. Help me see with the eyes of Christ today. Help me see every brother’s loveliness, holiness, and innocence Help me forgive each and every brother who comes into my presence or into my mind. I count on Your Holy Spirit to guide me today in the way of forgiveness.”
Wait in silence for His answer: This led me into my meditation, in which His answer came via a sense of peace and certainty and a feeling of loving and being loved.
By the end of my practice time, I found myself sitting there with a smile on my face. I had a deep feeling of peace and joy, as well as gratitude for Jesus and my lesson, and for Robert for yet another gift to hasten me home.
If you haven’t already tried this new tool, I heartily recommend that you do. I hope that it will have just as powerful an effect on you that it is having on me.