Lesson 170

There is no cruelty in God and none in me.

No one attacks without intent to hurt. This can have no exception. When you think that you attack in self-defense, you mean that to be cruel is protection; you are safe because of cruelty. You mean that you believe to hurt another brings you freedom. And you mean that to attack is to exchange the state in which you are for something better, safer, more secure from dangerous invasion and from fear.

How thoroughly insane is the idea that to defend from fear is to attack! For here is fear begot and fed with blood, to make it grow and swell and rage. And thus is fear protected, not escaped. Today we learn a lesson which can save you more delay and needless misery than you can possibly imagine. It is this:

You make what you defend against, and by your own defense against it, is it real and inescapable. Lay down your arms, and only then do you perceive it false.

It seems to be the enemy without that you attack. Yet your defense sets up an enemy within; an alien thought at war with you, depriving you of peace, splitting your mind into two camps which seem wholly irreconcilable. For love now has an “enemy,” an opposite; and fear, the alien, now needs your defense against the threat of what you really are.

If you consider carefully the means by which your fancied self-defense proceeds on its imagined way, you will perceive the premises on which the idea stands. First, it is obvious ideas must leave their source, for it is you who make attack, and must have first conceived of it. Yet you attack outside yourself, and separate your mind from him who is to be attacked, with perfect faith the split you made is real.

Next, are the attributes of love bestowed upon its “enemy.” For fear becomes your safety and protector of your peace, to which you turn for solace and escape from doubts about your strength, and hope of rest in dreamless quiet. And as love is shorn of what belongs to it and it alone, love is endowed with attributes of fear. For love would ask you lay down all defense as merely foolish. And your arms indeed would crumble into dust. For such they are.

With love as enemy, must cruelty become a god. And gods demand that those who worship them obey their dictates, and refuse to question them. Harsh punishment is meted out relentlessly to those who ask if the demands are sensible or even sane. It is their enemies who are unreasonable and insane, while they are always merciful and just.

Today we look upon this cruel god dispassionately. And we note that though his lips are smeared with blood, and fire seems to flame from him, he is but made of stone. He can do nothing. We need not defy his power. He has none. And those who see in him their safety have no guardian, no strength to call upon in danger, and no mighty warrior to fight for them.

This moment can be terrible. But it can also be the time of your release from abject slavery. You make a choice, standing before this idol, seeing him exactly as he is. Will you restore to love what you have sought to wrest from it and lay before this mindless piece of stone? Or will you make another idol to replace it? For the god of cruelty takes many forms. Another can be found.

Yet do not think that fear is the escape from fear. Let us remember what the text has stressed about the obstacles to peace. The final one, the hardest to believe is nothing, and a seeming obstacle with the appearance of a solid block, impenetrable, fearful and beyond surmounting, is the fear of God Himself. Here is the basic premise which enthrones the thought of fear as god. For fear is loved by those who worship it, and love appears to be invested now with cruelty.

Where does the totally insane belief in gods of vengeance come from? Love has not confused its attributes with those of fear. Yet must the worshippers of fear perceive their own confusion in fear’s “enemy”; its cruelty as now a part of love. And what becomes more fearful than the Heart of Love Itself? The blood appears to be upon His Lips; the fire comes from Him. And He is terrible above all else, cruel beyond conception, striking down all who acknowledge Him to be their God.

The choice you make today is certain. For you look for the last time upon this bit of carven stone you made, and call it god no longer. You have reached this place before, but you have chosen that this cruel god remain with you in still another form. And so the fear of God returned with you. This time you leave it there. And you return to a new world, unburdened by its weight; beheld not in its sightless eyes, but in the vision that your choice restored to you.

Now do your eyes belong to Christ, and He looks through them. Now your voice belongs to God and echoes His. And now your heart remains at peace forever. You have chosen Him in place of idols, and your attributes, given by your Creator, are restored to you at last. The Call for God is heard and answered. Now has fear made way for love, as God Himself replaces cruelty.

Father, we are like You. No cruelty abides in us, for there is none in You. Your peace is ours. And we bless the world with what we have received from You alone. We choose again, and make our choice for all our brothers, knowing they are one with us. We bring them Your salvation as we have received it now. And we give thanks for them who render us complete. In them we see Your glory, and in them we find our peace. Holy are we because Your Holiness has set us free. And we give thanks. Amen.



What does this lesson mean to me?

I kept going back and reading this lesson because I just could not take in the word cruelty. I never thought of myself as cruel. It just didn’t make sense to me. This was obvious resistance because Jesus is clear when he says all attack is done with the intention to hurt and that is cruel.

I used to tell myself that I attack because I think it was necessary to my defense, and that was my excuse and the reason I could see attack as something less than an intent to cause harm, and the reason I could reject the idea of cruelty. After all, would defense be cruel? It seemed that it was necessary, and even sensible to protect myself when I was fearful.

But now I see that in reacting to fear with defense I separate myself from the one I would attack and anytime I separate myself from another, I separate myself from God. It is in defending I would be convincing myself that the cause of the fear is outside of myself and thus out of my hands. Defense would convince me that I am weak and vulnerable and in need of defense. This is a vicious circle that would imprison me within its solid walls so that my life would become an endless cycle of fear, of defense and attack.

If I tell myself that fear is my friend, and alerts me to eminent danger from which I must protect myself through attack, then I am saying that love is the weak link and of little value. It is in this way that I dethrone Love as God and instead choose fear, cruelty, and attack as my gods. Even though they are ineffectual gods I would cling to them, believing they are my only defense and my only safety. In defense, I am actually saying that God cannot help me, so I must depend on fear and cruelty to save me.

I now see that my resistance to see attack for what it is allows me to keep attack in my life. As long as I justify defense then attack is justified, and this is the same thing as saying cruelty is justified. I see why Jesus used this harsh word because it woke me up to what I have been doing. When I attack I am cruel and not to just the person I attacked, but ultimately to myself because I am reinforcing the mistaken belief I could be in need of defense, that I could be separate from this brother I see as enemy and that I could be separate from my Creator.

My salvation is that thoughts leave not their source. As Jesus says in the title of this lesson, there is no cruelty in God and none in me. I am a thought in God’s Mind and have not left my Source, so I am not cruel. My cruelty is the result of believing that I did leave my Source and am now different from God. This is just a belief; no matter how devastating the effect seems to be, it is just a belief. I am free to choose differently.

Here is something that happened when I was beginning to understand this lesson. This situation really helped me to realize that I don’t want to attack anyone for anything.

My granddaughter got some kind of stomach virus the other day, and last night my daughter had it. I stayed up quite late helping out and woke up feeling tired. I also worried that I would get it next. I asked the Holy Spirit to help me use this situation to understand the lesson. First, I see that the ego is using this situation to reinforce the idea I am a body. Sickness comes from other people and I have no control over what happens to me because my body is defenseless against it.

Thinking of it like this, I see that I feel attacked by these sick people and need to defend myself against them. They are making me sick by spreading their sickness. It seems unfair and I remind myself that they did not get sick just to attack me. But I still believe they are a danger to me and I need to surround myself with some kind of protection against them; I don’t know, maybe a cloud of Lysol. At first, I stayed barricaded in my room, then the mom gene kicked in and I went to help.

This morning as I went around in a fog of exhaustion and wondered if I was going to get sick too, I was able to be honest enough to notice that I felt resentful toward them. I hated looking at that and wanted to just push that feeling away as unworthy, but instead, I accepted it as a real feeling that I am having, and saw that it is an attack and indeed cruel.

It is easier to see this as cruel because I cannot justify my resentment. But I also see that as a trap. All attack is cruel, and justification is the way I keep attack and continue to see myself as separate and attack as necessary. In other words, if I become defenseless I will see that God is right and I am wrong, and I will give up my individual self, which I see as the ultimate attack and one coming from a cruel God. This is what I am really defending against.

My message from Holy Spirit

Me: I notice that as I am talking this out with you, Holy Spirit, in a willingness to see differently, I am feeling better. I think I understand that feeling tired was part of my defense strategy.

Holy Spirit: The ego would like to “catch” their stomach upset because it would prove that you are being attacked and need to defend yourself. The ego would then be able to show its innocent face and say, “See, I did nothing to deserve this. I put my own self-interest aside to help others and was attacked for my trouble. They are the guilty ones, and I am obviously innocent.” This would, of course, justify your defense against them.

What I say to you is that you do not have to play this ego game. You have not left your Source. You are truly innocent and do not need defense. They are equally innocent and harmless to you. They cannot give you anything you do not want.

If you choose to accept sickness and worship at that altar, it will only be because you still feel a need to protect yourself from God’s love. Do not think you must do this. Let this be the moment when you choose to hear the Voice for God instead of blindly following the ego voice. Each moment of your life you are given the opportunity to change your mind. Why not make this the moment you do so?

Me: Thank you, Holy Spirit.


Sissy · June 18, 2016 at 1:46 pm

What a lesson that I needed as I lay here with a horrible cold or flu. Don’t know which one. Just really sick. I know I wanted to be sick. I believe that. Just not sure why. Unless it was to defend myself against Gods love. I think that’s all I want is love ? I love love ! Ahhh ! I wanted attention from Robert. A man I have been dating for 7 months. I was not getting the attention from him that I wanted. HS please help me to stop attacking myself & Robert. TY Myron.

    revmyron · June 19, 2016 at 6:47 am

    Good catch, Sissy!

rosemarie tropf · June 19, 2016 at 7:06 am

This lesson changed my life yesterday. It changed my life because it uncovered a layer of defensiveness that I kind of knew was there but denied because I thought I could hide it but mostly because I thought it was my mothers. Doesn’t that sound weird? My mother was an atheist. My mother was abused and cheated on. She became hard and mean. Any sentiment spoken by me from age 8 and forever after that was met with snarls of how stupid that was, and that’s how empty headed blondes talk and how I was being weak and would be taken advantage of. This was a daily mantra for my mother to all of us but especially me because I was the oldest girl and I matured at age 10. I was 5/4″ tall at age 10 and had my period. (I took after my 2 Norwegian aunts who were 6 feet tall she said.) She was trying to protect me from men who at age 11 thought I was 18 or 19. I thought I was being nice to men when they flirted with me but she saw it as dangerous pedophiles everywhere. I defied her trying to trust everyone, trying to be nice to everyone and not become bitter and untrusting like her. Well guess what? Just as the line in this lesson says, “You make what you defend against, and by your own defense against it, is it real and inescapable.” True! She became abusive with all her children the more she was abused. I cry for her now. When I got married I was still trying to see everyone as nice and kind, except my husband, who I was terrified would cheat on me like mum said he would. I read those True Romance magazines. I just “knew “all men cheated. I built a defensive shield so thick I could not see it. My fear of being cheated on or abused was deadly. My husband is a very charming flirty guy. Every joke, every wink, every bit of fun he had with a female looked like a threat to me when I was younger. That became too painful so I build another wall of defense by labeling him, by deciding what he was instead of asking Holy Spirit what all that meant. I became choppy, snarly, blaming him for being a “cheat.” My mum was right I decided. I still came off as a very nice spiritual person but inside I was roiling with the fear of being cheated on, the anger at his defiance of my controlling ways. I kept trying to hide this from everyone. I would NOT let anyone see I was afraid or jealous or insecure. I would not sound like an old shrew like my mother. I would not get a divorce and leave my children without a father. All through this emotional terror that I imposed on myself I was seeking spirituality, trying to find God, meditating and praying but never about THAT!. Outwardly I was pleasant, spiritual, a good wife, a good mother and very moral. Inside was raging this fear of being cheated on. This lesson says, “Yet do not think that fear is the escape from fear.” I thought if I kept this fear at the forefront of my mind I would be safe. Isn’t that weird? Nobody knew I had this but me! However, my husband knew I was cold and un-yielding at times and wondered why. I was very defensive towards him leaving him confused an angry. This was a very thick wall of defense. I found myself sounding pugnacious once in a while and I didn’t like that because pugnacious is one step away from bitter like mum. So, outwardly I continued looking like the perfect wife, the perfect hostess all the while scanning the room looking for who he was flirting with, who he might cheat with. Until I became so exhausted inside I quit. I gave up. I said I don’t care anymore. Then I became bitter outwardly toward, “him.” Ha! I thought that would him but not hurt me! Jesus says in this lesson, “You mean that you believe to hurt another brings you freedom. And you mean that to attack is to exchange the state in which you are for something better, safer, more secure from dangerous invasion and from fear.” That’s what I was doing. I thought I could hurt him by being cold and un-yielding but all that does is hurt me. There is no him and me there is only one mind. I have made myself suffer exactly as my mother did but without her cause. So to speak. She was being abused I was not. She was being cheated on I’m not sure I was, but in my mind I was. This is a huge revelation for me today. I thought that to hang onto defensiveness, to sound uncaring was a protection. I made an idol out of stoicism. I made an idol out of resentment and silence, thinking that would protect me like mum said. Don’t trust anybody. Don’t laugh and forget who you are or you’ll be taken advantage of. Stay alert for cheaters and abusers and trust no one. All these warnings are perfect for keeping the separation intact. I have a sister who is exactly like this and she is the sweetest, most hard working girl ever. But no trust at all! Her fear of men is palpable. Our mother warned us daily, hourly how horrible men were. We were little girls and she thought those warnings and her bitterness should protect us from sexual abuse. Well it did in her mind. Sort of. Not really. Fearing the external now seems silly compared to what I can create on myself internally! That wall of defensiveness is more painful than anything external I have ever experienced by far. That wall of defensiveness blocks God’s Love. That defensiveness is a huge block to Love’s Presence. I am no longer a little girl except internally and I am still listening to my mother who I was determined I would NEVER copy. I will never be like my mother I told myself over and over and over. In many ways I was not like her due to my spiritual beliefs but internally what I did to myself is exactly like her. This lesson state the truth of this when Jesus says, “It seems to be the enemy without that you attack. Yet your defense sets up an enemy within; an alien thought at war with you, depriving you of peace, splitting your mind into two camps which seem wholly irreconcilable. For love now has an “enemy,” an opposite; and fear, the alien, now needs your defense against the threat of what you really are.” Whew! Tough stuff to look at. But I am so glad I did. There is a crack in my wall of defensiveness now. The light is pouring through that crack. Thank you Holy Spirit, Thank you Jesus for this lesson and thank you Myron for sharing with us daily.

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