God is in everything I see.
The idea for today explains why you can see all purpose in everything. It explains why nothing is separate, by itself or in itself. And it explains why nothing you see means anything. In fact, it explains every idea we have used thus far, and all subsequent ones as well. Today’s idea is the whole basis for vision.
You will probably find this idea very difficult to grasp at this point. You may find it silly, irreverent, senseless, funny and even objectionable. Certainly God is not in a table, for example, as you see it. Yet we emphasized yesterday that a table shares the purpose of the universe. And what shares the purpose of the universe shares the purpose of its Creator.
Try then, today, to begin to learn how to look on all things with love, appreciation and open-mindedness. You do not see them now. Would you know what is in them? Nothing is as it appears to you. Its holy purpose stands beyond your little range. When vision has shown you the holiness that lights up the world, you will understand today’s idea perfectly. And you will not understand how you could ever have found it difficult.
Our six two-minute practice periods for today should follow a now familiar pattern: Begin with repeating the idea to yourself, and then apply it to randomly chosen subjects about you, naming each one specifically. Try to avoid the tendency toward self-directed selection, which may be particularly tempting in connection with today’s idea because of its wholly alien nature. Remember that any order you impose is equally alien to reality.
Your list of subjects should therefore be as free of self-selection as possible. For example, a suitable list might include:
God is in this coat hanger.
God is in this magazine.
God is in this finger.
God is in this lamp.
God is in that body.
God is in that door.
God is in that waste basket.
In addition to the assigned practice periods, repeat the idea for today at least once an hour, looking slowly about you as you say the words unhurriedly to yourself. At least once or twice, you should experience a sense of restfulness as you do this.
I really understand image making now. Since God is in everything I see, obviously, when I look with my eyes, I don’t see anything as it exists. Jesus tells us this often in the Course. He says that my thoughts are images I have made. He says that we didn’t give the eyes the function of seeing. “It is image making. It takes the place of seeing, replacing vision with illusions.”
So I don’t see anything real with my eyes. I see images I make to represent the thoughts in my mind, the things I believe. I have this physical thing going on right now. What does this image of a malfunctioning body represent to me? Perhaps, it represents the belief that I am a body, or that I am destructible, vulnerable, fragile.
As I accept what Jesus has been telling us for the last 29 days, I can look at this situation differently. I understand that the body is just an image itself and that any experience it has must be a hallucination. Just part of the image that represents these beliefs and that the beliefs can be questioned.
If I drew a Picasso like image of my face with strange angles and colors, this would not mean I look like that. I would know that this was just an image that represented some thoughts in my mind. The world I see is no different. It is a strange image of strange and untrue beliefs. Doing these lessons is helping me to question what I see and thus to question the beliefs the images represent.
Ultimately, in my questioning, I am opening my mind to vision. I repeat yesterday’s desire. Above all else, I want to see what is really there. As I allow my beliefs to be corrected and my mind to be purified, this will happen as it has happened to others like Regina and Cate and Byron Katie and John Mark Stroud and Michael Langford, and Alisha, and Jan Frazier and many others that I don’t know. If it can happen for anyone, it can happen for everyone because we are one.
Once when I did the previous lesson in which I expressed my commitment to seeing differently, I was sitting in a chair at a desk. It was facing a mirror and when I looked up, I said that above all else I want to see that face differently. Of course, the body’s eyes did not see a difference. The eyes function is to show us what we made to take the place of actual vision, not vision itself. This “seeing” is not about that. It is perceiving and is done with the mind.
Jesus has been slowly building an idea. For the last two days, he has asked that we commit ourselves to something entirely new. He didn’t really explain why or how or what it meant. He asked for our trust. Today, we understand why there is something to see behind what the body’s eyes report to us, why there is something beautiful and clean and of infinte value and hope. God is in everything we see.
So this morning as I sat in the same chair before the same mirror, I realized that when I looked up, the first thing I would see was my face. I would say that God is in this face. I found myself strangely reluctant and as I thought of it, my heart began to race, from happy anticipation or from fear, I don’t know. But when I did it, I felt happy. I was given several thoughts toward the end of the eye gaze.
I said that God is in this face and then I realized that this was a more accurate statement than that God is in my face. My face implies ownership, which is a statement of separation. God is in this face. The second idea to come to me is that I have been wrong when in the past I saw the body as a symbol of my sin, something to be denied. God is in this body. It was only my desire to use the body to prove separation and to deny God that made it fearful to me. Today, I am looking past my ideas about the body, and with Christ Vision I see God. Holy cow!
The ego is full of objections and as I try to push them aside, I notice a sharp pain in my head. So I stop pushing away the objections and just let them flow past me. Without the personalization of the body, it is a tool that the Holy Spirit uses to teach me true communication. Without my ego thoughts to confuse the purpose of the body, it becomes the way I allow Love to flow through in my awareness, and so experience the joy and the peace I am meant to have. And as it flows through this body it flows to others and gifts them with this peace and joy.
As I lift from the body the onerous definitions I gave it, I see that it is like everything else I see, no different and no more important than the desk where I am sitting, and also, no less important. All things I see have the same purpose, the purpose they share with the universe. I thought that my body was the definitive definition of my separate self.
I thought it described me and exposed me to the world. How it looked said so much about what I am, and it seemed to lay bare my many faults, my unworthiness. As this body aged, it seemed to be the way I proved that death is real and so God must be a lie. But none of this is true, it is only the ego effort to sustain itself. God is in this body and it shares a holy purpose.
Here are two more ideas that stood out to me today. To become aware of God in everything I see, I must look at each thing with love, appreciation, and open-mindedness. First, I see that I am not doing this now. When I look around my office I feel uneasy. I see a room that needs to be organized. I see work undone, papers not filed.
I am not looking with love but with judgment of the room and of myself for my failure to do these things. Because I am not looking with love, I have little appreciation for the room. How could I appreciate the room that I have given so much negative meaning, the room that seems to prove my inadequacies? I am willing, however, to look with love and appreciation and so I open my mind and I ask the Holy Spirit to help me do this.
Another thing I notice is that I not only personalize the body, but I personalize everything. I look at my cup of coffee and wait to see God in it. The ego mind has thoughts about the cup of coffee and it tries to bring me its version of love and appreciation. It thinks about how perfectly the cup fits my hand and how the coffee helps jump-start my brain in the mornings. These are nice thoughts about my cup of coffee, but none of these are the purpose the cup of coffee shares with the universe, it is about what the coffee cup means to Myron alone. This is not meaning at all because there is no Myron alone.
This morning I read the lesson and I thought, “I don’t need to actually do this lesson. I have done it before and I understand that God is in everything I see.” But I finally understand I don’t know what this cup of coffee means or what it is for. I don’t know anything about it. I am willing to open my mind this morning and be shown something I cannot know with the ego mind. “Holy Spirit, show me God in my cup of coffee.”