Purpose: To learn a new way of seeing. In this kind of seeing, what you see does not come in from the external world, through your body's eyes, or from you projecting your illusions onto the world. Rather, it comes from you "projecting" the truth that is in your mind onto everything you see.
Exercise: As often as possible throughout the day, for one minute.
Look about you and apply the idea to your visual field and even to what lies beyond that field, out of sight. Make sure that, for several of the exercises, you close your eyes and apply the idea to your inner world.
As yesterday's lesson was the "whole basis" (W-pI.29.1:5) for vision, today's idea is "the springboard" (1:1). That God is in everything I see forms the foundation. Knowing that this is so "because God is in my mind" is what can propel us from mere sight into vision.
From this idea will the world open up before you, and you will look upon it and see in it what you have never seen before. Nor will what you saw before be even faintly visible to you. (1:2-3)
Fundamental to understanding what the Course is talking about is the fact that what we see is quite directly caused by what is in our mind. The commonsense idea of perception is that something outside causes an impression, through my senses, on my mind. The reality is the reverse, according to the Course. The thoughts of my mind are projected outward and cause my perceptions. "Projection makes perception," says the Text in two different places (T-13.V.3:5; T-21.In.1:1; compare with T-10.In.2:7).
What this lesson attempts to teach us is "a new kind of 'projection'" (2:1). We might call it "positive projection." Instead of using projection to get rid of thoughts we are uncomfortable with, we are attempting to see in the world what we want to see in our own minds. What I want to see, for one thing, is my own innocence. Therefore I am attempting to see the world as innocent. I am choosing my thoughts and deliberately "projecting" them onto the world. I want to see myself as having God in my mind, and so I choose to see everything as having God in it.
If all things contain God, and I contain God, then we are joined. "Thus, we are trying to join with what we see, rather than keeping it apart from us. That is the fundamental difference between vision and the way you see" (2:4-5). Our kind of seeing emphasizes differences and distinctions; vision emphasizes sameness.
"Real vision is not only unlimited by space and distance, but it does not depend on the body's eyes at all" (5:1). It is becoming clearer with each lesson that the vision being talked about has nothing at all to do with our physical sight. In the Course's thought system, our eyes do not see at all; they are merely the means for deception. We can include in our vision things beyond the range of physical sight. This is a seeing done with our minds, not with eyes. "The mind is its only source" (5:2).
Now I recall our earlier lesson, "Above all else I want to see" (Lesson 28) with a stronger sense of purpose. I want vision; I want this other kind of seeing that sees God everywhere. I want it because somehow I instinctively know that if I can see things that way, I will also be able to see myself that way. If I can see you as a holy child of God, innocent and blameless, I will know that I am seeing a reflection of myself. I want to see myself that way, so I want to see you that way.
God is in my mind. The world mirrors what is in my mind. How, then, do I want to see the world? Am I willing to see the world with God in it? If not, it only reflects the fact that I am unwilling and afraid to see His presence in my mind.