I. The Message of the Crucifixion, P 3
3 You have probably reacted for years as if you were being crucified. This is a marked tendency of the separated, who always refuse to consider what they have done to themselves. Projection means anger, anger fosters assault, and assault promotes fear. The real meaning of the crucifixion lies in the apparent intensity of the assault of some of the Sons of God upon another. This, of course, is impossible, and must be fully understood as impossible. Otherwise, I cannot serve as a model for learning.
I want to focus on the first part of this paragraph. I see that I have been reacting for years as if I were being crucified. Only recently have I begun a consistent practice of reminding myself that I but do this to myself, and what makes this effective is that I don’t make exceptions no matter how tempting. If it is in my world, in my awareness, then I did it to myself, and no one else is responsible.
Here is what happened in the past. I will take something simple like being sick last week. The doctor said it was probably a virus. In the past I would have immediately wondered where I picked up a virus. I would have felt helpless against the world and a victim to this fragile body which can get sick in an instant no matter how careful I was or how good I took care of it.
I could let this make me feel hopeless and depressed, or if I was mentally healthier than that, I would accept that this is just the way things are and work harder at making a healthy body that could at least resist the worst of the diseases. In the back of mind where I didn’t have to look at it all the time, but where it still poisoned me, was the fear that there was nothing I could do but hope for the best and expect the worst. Maybe next time it would be cancer or something like that and there was nothing I could do to prevent it.
It was very easy for me to think of myself as a victim. There really seemed to be nothing I could do about this. I could pray that I would be special to God and spared pain and suffering, but that seemed wrong somehow, to ask God to keep me safe while allowing bad things to be visited on others and this fostered more guilt in the mind.
I would have to deserve special treatment and this is a road that I often went down. It leads to more specialness, more separateness, and I was never good enough in my own mind to be deserving of God’s special love. This is an example of how I felt I was being crucified and that was just a relatively small thing. And I did it to myself.
Taking that same situation as it happened to me last week this is how I did it this time. I saw I was sick and I asked Holy Spirit to help me use this situation to heal my mind. From working with pain and suffering before I have learned that the body is neutral and that it is an effect of the mind and therefore cannot make effects.
This means that the body cannot get sick. It cannot even feel. So the sickness must be in my mind. The pain and suffering must be in my mind. The first thing this does is stop me from looking for someone or something to blame for the symptoms I am experiencing. This body did not catch something from someone else. This mind is simply projecting onto the idea of a body, and you don’t catch beliefs, nor do you treat the body to rid the mind of beliefs.
I know this must be true, but I don’t know it in the way that is instantly healing. It is in my mind, but not yet in my heart, so I continue to use every chance I get to accept the Atonement for my false beliefs about the body. Each time I do this, the knowing moves more completely into the heart and one day I will try to remember exactly what it was like to believe I could be harmed and to believe it was done to me and could be undone through fixing the body. I know it will be like that because that is the way it has happened with other things as I fully accepted the Atonement and allowed my mind to be healed.
Here is something neat that happened while I was sick. I was having very painful stomach cramps and this went on for a couple of hours. Suddenly I realized I was making this sickness special, like it was somehow different than other pain I have felt. This sickness, despite the symptoms which seem very real and centered in the body, could only be in my mind. I chose not to suffer. Instantly the cramps stopped. Instantly.
So I had to wonder, after the fact, why it is that I was willing to see that the really bad pain was not real, but allowed the lesser pain of mild nausea, headache, and tiredness to continue. I wonder what value sickness has for me. I had a lot of ego thoughts during this week long sickness. The ego voice in my head wondered if it was something serious and I listened to that voice and took the body to the doctor.
While there I realized that this was going to be a waste of time. He asked me questions about how long I had stomach cramps and how serious the pain was. What do I say to him? “Well, Doc, I had pain until I remembered pain is not real. Does that help you diagnose me?” I lost interest in the doctor as I realized that going to the doctor was just a response to listening to the ego instead of Holy Spirit.
That’s ok though, and I’m not guilty for that. In fact the doctor gave me something for the symptoms that I was not willing to let go any other way. I may be confused about what is real and what isn’t, but I am no longer willing to suffer like I used to. I am also no longer willing to accept the ego’s judgment of me. I am innocent when I learn my lesson about the body, and I am just as innocent when I choose to pretend that medicine is what I need.
The difference in what happens now when I get sick is that no matter what I do about it, I am not confused about my purpose. I don’t waste as much time trying to find someone or something to blame. I don’t ever fully believe the ego thoughts about it. I still waver about medicine and doctors or accepting the Atonement, but really, I know that it is in my mind, not my body and that the mind is my responsibility.
I know I have not been crucified, but I still crucify myself. I just get down off the cross much sooner now. And I don’t waste these crucifixions. I look at them with the Holy Spirit and allow Him to show me a different way. Actually, this is pretty exciting. While I accepted the false belief that I was sick, I didn’t suffer much because I didn’t completely believe in the sickness. I would waver from suffering to just watching, but mostly I didn’t suffer. I noticed how unstable I am when I have one foot in the truth and one foot in the ego.
I am willing to learn these things without the discomfort of sickness. “Holy Spirit, I see that I still value the idea of sickness and I am willing for the Atonement for that false belief. I am willing to learn without pain. I am willing to know my worth and my innocence. Please heal my mind.”