Practice Instructions Review IV


REVIEW IV Practice instructions

Purpose: To prepare for Part II of the Workbook (which does not begin for another eighty lessons). The next review (Review V) announces this same preparation. The Workbook seems to assume that we have gotten over some kind of hump (see, for instance, W-pI.122.10:2), and that now, with much of our resistance behind us, we can focus on getting ready for the pinnacle of the Workbook: Part II.

Longer: Two—beginning and ending of the day—for about seven minutes.

First, spend five minutes dwelling on the central idea of the review: “My mind holds only what I think with God.” Quiet your mind, and repeat the idea over and over, very slowly, focusing on its meaning. Let it clear out and replace all of your normal thinking. Your usual thoughts (as paragraphs 3 and 4 explain) are really unforgiveness in disguise. Since these thoughts are not of God, they obscure the truth that your mind holds only what you think with God. By clearing them out and thinking only this one thought from the Course, you get in touch with your mind’s true state, in which it thinks only Thoughts from God. This will prepare you for a day which reflects that true state, in which the thoughts that occur to you come from God (see 6:1-2).

If your normal thoughts try to intrude, dispel them with the central thought. One suggestion for this time is to use the imagery of 4:3. Picture your mind as the ocean. Placing one of your normal thoughts in your mind is like a child throwing a stick into the ocean. How can that change the grand rhythms of the ocean (the tides, the sun warming the water, the moon reflecting on the surface)? How can that change the grand thoughts you share with God?

After these five minutes, move on to the second phase. Read the two review ideas, close your eyes, and repeat them silently to yourself—very slowly. God placed a gift inside each word. Let your mind receive that gift. “Let each word shine with the meaning God has given it” (7:4). Receive the thought He placed in there for you, for such receiving is the true condition of your mind.

The purpose of the first phase is to prepare you for this second phase. By spending five minutes dwelling only on a thought from God, you prepare yourself to see in the two review ideas only the meaning placed in them by God.

Remarks: In the evening, repeat the same practice. Realize that the central thought has “made the day a special time of blessing” (9:3), both for you and for the world through your faithful practicing. Realize also that you drop off into sleep surrounded by God’s gratitude for your practicing. For you are now learning to reclaim the inheritance He gave you.

Shorter: Hourly, for a quiet moment.

This is a miniature version of the morning and evening practice. Spend a quiet moment with the central thought, and then repeat the two review ideas, slowly, giving yourself time to see the precious gifts of meaning that God placed in them for you.